UMS targets 50% more science students



KOTA KINABALU: Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) aims to increase the number of undergraduates pursuing science-related courses by more than 50 per cent, according to its vice chancellor Prof. Dr. Mohd Harun Abdullah.

“Forty-five per cent of the undergraduates who registered for the new 2012/13 academic session are in the science stream,” Mohd Harun told a press conference yesterday.

Despite describing the target as a big challenge, he expressed confidence that the establishment of the Pusat Asasi Sains would render support to the university in its pursuit to attain the target.

Meanwhile, a total of 5,068 students have been offered places to study at UMS – an increase of nine per cent – compared to 4,606 last year.

“The intake of foreign students increased by seven per cent to 182, with the bulk of 160 students coming from China and the rest from Indonesia, Turkey, South Korea and Brunei Darussalam,” he said.

Mohd Harun added that online registration was introduced for the first time this year but prospective students who did not do so could still register at the registration counter upon their arrival at the campus.

“As at Friday afternoon, 4,140 students have registered. This year we started using the online registration system and obviously it is a positive development.

“We also take into account the problem faced by students living in the interior who might not have access to the Internet and have allowed a period of one or two weeks for them to register,” he said.

Mohd Harun said the number of international students at the university had risen by seven per cent compared to last year.

“We will increase the number of international students not only from China, Brunei and Indonesia but also from other countries,” he said.

Meanwhile, he said 40 per cent of the new batch comprised Sabah students.

He also said it was compulsory for the new students or first-year students to stay in the university’s college residence.