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The Bright Side of Joining University in 2020

8 September 2020 | by Laura Evans

The education industry has faced a major shakeup as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, with almost all educational institutions having to make the move to online education. Uncertainty in the sector has discouraged some students from applying to university, opting instead to postpone their studies until next year. But while university life for the 2020 cohort may not be how they first imagined it, if students enrol with an open mind, they could become part of a historic generation bold enough to join the education revolution - things are unlikely to ever go back to the way they were, and blended learning is anticipated to become the new benchmark.

Undeterred by the pandemic, Rishmikha has just begun studying a Foundation in Arts at the International University of Malaya-Wales (IUMW), based in the heart of Kuala Lumpur. “My classes are on campus at the moment and then we’ll switch to online. I didn’t want to just sit at home, getting lazy and put off starting uni - I want to graduate in 4 years and start my career. I don’t want to delay and so far everything is going great!”

In an age where communication, enterprise and commerce take place in a digital world, studying at university in much the same way could offer students an added advantage, preparing them for employment as it is today. According to Dr Nisa Omar, Head of the Faculty of Communication, Arts & Media at IUMW, it could set some students apart when it comes to landing a job after graduation.

“Online study will look great on a student’s resume - it shows future employers that you can learn, work and collaborate successfully through digital interfaces, which are highly valued attributes in this day and age”.

IUMW is a joint venture between the University of Malaya and the University of Wales and offers programmes in communication, media, social sciences, business, and science & technology. The university is currently using a blended learning approach, with a combination of face-to-face and online learning.

While the first-year students of 2020 might feel like they are missing out on the traditional university experience, the extraordinary circumstances in which they began their higher education journey could ultimately set them apart from others. Add to that the mass deferrals from 2020 which could make 2021 one of the most competitive years to enter university, signing up to university in 2020 could be the best decision for this year’s school and college leavers. With this September as the last intake of the year, for those not looking to delay their studies - now is the time to start.

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