Higher Education department director general Datuk Dr Siti Hamisah Tapsir (left) presented the Certificate of Registration to (from left) University of Cyberjaya’s Pro Chancellor Tan Sri Dr R Palan, Board of Governors chairman Tan Sri Dr Ridzwan Bakar and president and vice-chancellor Prof Datuk Dr Mohamad Abd Razak.

CYBERJAYA University College of Medical Sciences (CUCMS) is now officially known as University of Cyberjaya.

The institution that was set up in 2005 has been invited to upgrade to university status by the Education Ministry, making it the newest private university in the nation.

In a simple yet meaningful ceremony on Tuesday, Higher Education Department director-general Datuk Dr Siti Hamisah Tapsir presented the Certificate of Registration to the university’s pro chancellor Tan Sri Dr R Palan, Board of Governors chairman Tan Sri Dr Ridzwan Bakar and president and vice-chancellor Prof Datuk Dr Mohamad Abd Razak. “The institution has grown over the years. Because of the name, professionalism and courses offered by the institution, it met the criteria that was required to become a university. “We must now call CUCMS the University of Cyberjaya, ” said Siti Hamisah. With the upgrade in status, Palan said that the university intends to increase its focus on developing programmes that will incorporate critical elements in support of Industrial Revolution 4.0 (IR 4.0) in more traditional disciplines such as healthcare. “This is in support of the Global Technology Hub Blueprint for Cyberjaya launched by the Finance Ministry, ” he pointed out. First established over 14 years ago, the University of Cyberjaya initially offered medical and pharmaceutical programmes only.

Now the university offers over 30 different programmes in the areas of medical, pharmaceutical, applied sciences, engineering and business.It has five stars under the Rating for Higher Education Institutions in Malaysia (Setara), which was awarded by the ministry in 2017. It was recently awarded a 5-Star rating for the categories of Teaching, Facilities, Employability and Inclusiveness under the QS Stars programme produced by the publishers of the QS World University Rankings Palan added that the upgrade to full university status marked a significant milestone for the institution’s growing stature as a leading institute of higher learning in the region.

“With the comprehensive offering of undergraduate and graduate programmes, including our expansion to doctoral programmes, the University of Cyberjaya’s educational profile is already well-positioned with the academic distinction of a nationally and internationally recognised private university, ” he said. Mohamad believed that biomedical engineering, wearable technologies and innovation in drug technology are potential fields of expertise for the institution. He attributed the achievement to the university’s leadership team, academicians and staff who have clocked in hours of hard work, made sacrifices and put in their commitment. “We have come a long way and have brought together a strong faculty team led by experienced education professionals and academics with both local and international experiences, providing the perfect combination to take the university to greater heights, ” he said. Meanwhile, Siti Hamisah gave an hour-long lecture on the Future of Higher Education in Malaysia as part of the institution’s Distinguished Lecture Series programme to an audience of 600.

The audience consisted of the higher management of several universities, academicians, researchers and students. The talk shed light on the landscape of higher education, its challenges and youth development, among other areas. Given that the world is growing increasingly complex at a rapid pace, she noted that software revolution is reshaping the economy, with 50% of existing jobs expected to be replaced by software and automation in the future. “We have to move away from traditional conference-based lessons and create authentic learning experiences that connect students with real-world problems and work environments, ” she stressed. She also touched on initiatives the ministry is undertaking to reduce the graduate unemployment rate in the country. Concluding the lecture, Siti Hamisah said tertiary education providers need to transform their delivery of knowledge and put in more focus on real-world work.