SIBU (Feb 17): Frank Steward Panting Sa’s dream is to one day become a teacher.
To achieve this, the 19-year-old from Pakan has been willing to trek two hours up Bukit Kelingkang for better internet speeds to attend his Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris (UPSI) interviews online.
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In a now viral Facebook video posted by older brother Mario Sa, Frank can be seen on Monday sitting on a bemban mat in a makeshift hut built by his father Sa Ujom.
“He brought along the mat to sit on but his pants got wet during the interview due to heavy rain earlier,” Mario related.
“His legs were bitten by leeches but he persisted to follow the footsteps of others who had achieved success in their life.”
According to Mario, their longhouse Rumah Suing in Teberu, Ulu Kemalih is equipped with the WiFi Sarawak Linking Urban, Rural and Nation (Saluran) network.
However, he said it is unable to support the data requirements of online interviews, which take a long period to complete.
“It can be used for WhatsApp and Facebook as these applications require less data use.
“Such is the difficulty of network coverage in the rural area. We have to bear with it and at the same time hope relevant parties will help to resolve the problem,” he said.
When contacted, Frank said the around 45-minute interview was for Counselling, one of two subjects he had applied to study at UPSI.
The previous week, he attended a similar interview for Moral at the same spot.
He said the interview went smoothly except for the slow internet connection.
“The results are expected to be out in two weeks. I am 70 per cent confident that I will pass the interview,” he added.