International students take centre stage at degree ceremony

More than 190 University of Portsmouth students from Southeast Asia were awarded their degrees in a ceremony in Singapore this week.

Students from Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Myanmar, Brunei and China were joined by more than 550 friends and family members for the celebration at the Fullerton Hotel ballroom. They were presented with their awards by Vice-Chancellor Professor Graham Galbraith and Pro Vice-Chancellor (Global Engagement) Chris Chang.

From left: Dean of Portsmouth Business School Professor Gioia Pescetto, graduating student Putu Wirya Nagiantha and Vice-Chancellor Professor Graham Galbraith

From left: Dean of Business and Law Gioia Pescetto, graduating student Putu Wirya Nagiantha and Vice-Chancellor Professor Graham Galbraith

Nurfahizun Jofri was among the students attending the ceremony on Sunday, 26 November. Since studying for an Msc in Forensic IT, she has landed a position as a system associate at the Empire Hotel and Country Club in Brunei. She said of her time in Portsmouth: “I found the practice of cross-examining digital evidence using the tools and software at the University very beneficial. I was able to experience the Mock Court in the School of Law and collect evidence at a mock crime scene.”

Also among those receiving their degrees was Putu Wirya Nagiantha who took an Msc in Forensic Accounting before returning to Indonesia and resuming his work as an auditor. He said: “I found the degree really helped in my job, particularly conducting investigations and forensic tasks.”

Povanaswari Devindaran (MSc Project Management) found work as a project manager for British Petroleum in Kuala Lumpur after studying at Portsmouth. She found the studies at the University complemented her work and said her experience with fellow students from different industries had broadened her view and perspective of project management.

Of more than 22,000 full-time students at the University, approximately 4,000 are international students from more than 150 countries. Southeast Asian students make up 15 per cent of the international students and a similar number study with overseas partner campuses such as those in Singapore and Myanmar. Singapore educational partner Kaplan organised the ceremony with the University.

grad group webGraduating Accounting and Financial Management student Wan Wei Yu represented the class of 2017 by delivering an emotional speech in which he recalled fond memories from lectures, thanked his family and highlighted the importance of lifelong learning.

After the ceremony Professor Galbraith said: “It was a pleasure to visit Singapore and meet so many hard-working, talented and inspirational students and their families. They are a credit to the University of Portsmouth and I’m delighted that we have been able to provide learning opportunities that have launched, developed and enhanced their careers.

“We are proud of Portsmouth graduates who continue to be excellent ambassadors for the University in many different industries and regions of the world.”

During his speech at the ceremony University Pro Vice-Chancellor (Global Engagement) Chris Chang congratulated the graduates and said the University was proud of their achievements. He added: “It is a great pleasure and privilege to be sharing this precious moment with you and your partners, parents, families and friends – thank you for welcoming us.”

Mr Chang also thanked University lecturers and professional staff for their hard work, adding: “We are a university that is bold not old, a university which is a catalyst for change and which has a strong sense of energy, flexibility and dynamism. We are committed to providing the very best distinctive student experience, an experience that leads our graduates to make a real contribution to society.”

Also at the ceremony were Professor Gioia Pescetto, Dean of Business and Law, and Adele Wong, Director of the Southeast Asian office. Representing Kaplan were the institute’s President Leon Choong and Provost, Associate Professor Rhys Johnson.

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