KUALA LUMPUR: Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (Unimas) purchased 15 housing blocks costing RM52 million for the accommodation needs of 3,000 students while earning self-income in the process.
Higher Education Deputy Minister Datuk Dr Mary Yap Kain Ching said the step taken by Unimas was evident that public higher learning institutions (IPTA) were endeavouring to generate their own earnings.
This, she said, corresponded with the ministry’s hope for public universities to look for other income rather than depending on the 80 per cent funds provided by the government.
“Public higher learning institutions (IPTA) generate self-income through various sources including maximum use of assets, endowments, alumni networks, overseas education grants and commercialisation of products and ideas.”
Yap said this in the Dewan Rakyat yesterday, in response to Dr Azman Ismail (PKR-Kuala Kedah) who asked about the efforts of IPTA in generating their own income and the list of those that succeeded in doing so.
The deputy minister also cited Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) Kuala Lumpur which managed to build 500 accommodation units after securing a bank loan of RM180 million.
She said Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) received RM40 million from Yayasan Bukhari to build an auditorium.
Yap said the ministry also encouraged students and lecturers to involve themselves in entrepreneurship, in line with the Malaysia Education Blueprint 2015-2025 (Higher Education) to produce holistic, balanced graduates.
As for funds received from endowments, she said Universiti Putra Malaysia led with RM7.5 million last year.
To a supplementary question from Datin Mastura Mohd Yazid (BN-Kuala Kangsar) on the ministry’s efforts to promote innovations produced by universities, Yap said it made sure they were not confined to the universities concerned but also commercialised.
She cited the bionic hand and leg invented by University of Malaya in 2016 which had benefitted 60 individuals. — Bernama