Curtin students conquer Mount Kinabalu

Miri – 2 February 2018 – Eight students of Curtin University Malaysia (Curtin Malaysia) proudly unfurled a Curtin University flag as soon as they ascended the summit of Mount Kinabalu, Malaysia’s highest peak and amongst Southeast Asia’s highest at 4,095 metres, last Saturday.

The students were members of the first-ever Curtin Malaysia Mount Kinabalu Expedition organised by the students with support from Curtin Malaysia’s Housing and Recreation Services and University Life departments.

They comprised Malaysians Cynthia Cheong Jia Pey, Chua Tee Hong, Cheang Lai Teng, Leong Yuh Chyi and Tan Yee Leong, and Awangku Abdul Malik Pangiran Kamalrudzaman from Brunei, Mathan Chakkravarthy from India and Mahjoob Hasib Pramanik from Bangladesh.

Accompanying them was Sports and Recreation Officer Mohd. Shahrizan Bin Zaini who also guided the team through two months of physical training to condition them for the climb.

According to expedition leader Cheong, who hails from Sabah, the aim of the expedition was to promote the benefits of outdoor and sports activities and maintaining a healthy lifestyle among students. It was also aimed at giving students the opportunity to experience one of Malaysia’s unique natural attractions.

Cheong said organising the expedition was a good learning process for her, especially when it came to arranging the team’s logistics and itinerary. She also said that, as a Sabahan, she was proud to highlight the cultural and religious significance Mount Kinabalu has to the native communities of Sabah to the expedition members and other students of Curtin Malaysia who come from some 52 different countries.

“We have a very diverse international community of students and staff at Curtin Malaysia and activities like this expedition not only allows them to explore unique sites in Malaysia and learn beyond the classroom, but also build inter-cultural understanding and ties,” she remarked.

Chua said he enjoys the outdoors and was glad for the opportunity to join the expedition. He added that though the expedition members hardly knew each other at the start, they ended up being very close friends as they gave each other support and encouragement throughout the expedition.

Meanwhile, Cheang said that though climb was challenging, it was a big achievement for her. She said she learned important life lessons through the experience, including the importance of teamwork, and it helped boost her self-confidence considerably.

For second-year chemical engineering student Mathan, the mountain seemed colossal but the climb was well worth it as the view from the summit was truly spectacular. He also said that he would not been able to achieve the feat if it were not for the camaraderie within the team.

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The Curtin Malaysia Mount Kinabalu Expedition members at the summit.

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