I just hope that I am doing enough on my part to pass on the kindness & grace bestowed upon me so that others may benefit, grow &, in turn, pay it forward in their own way. This is the ultimate pyramid scheme that will really change the world. One that I can be proud to be part of & advocate, which is one of the reasons why I share my knowledge & experiences on this blog for free. I want to use all the blessings I have received to bless those whom God has placed in my life.
My story is one which is full of twists & turns. Not many of my relatives could believe that I have become a teacher. As a child, I was quite a notorious boy in my family. Talk to my mother. She'll have loads of stories to share.
After doing well in SPM (the big exam after high school), I got a scholarship from the Teacher Education Department (BPG), Ministry of Education (KPM), & Public Service Department (JPA) to pursue a Bachelor of Education in TESOL under a twinning program between Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand, & the former International Languages Teacher Training Institute (IPG KBA), Lembah Pantai, Kuala Lumpur. In 2008, I was awarded the Excellent Practicum Teacher Award by IPG KBA.
I found my calling as an educator in the jungles of Katibas, Sarawak. How I got there is another interesting story in itself. I taught at a remote secondary school (13-17 year olds) in the jungles of Borneo, SMK Katibas, for 7 years. I have faced uncountable hardships, heartaches & back-biting as well as purpose, achievement & international recognition. In 2011, I was awarded the Excellent Service Award (APC) by the Sarawak State Education Department. My work has also been featured in the news & media. Check out this list of projects I've run.
The Ministry of Education departments I've collaborated with include the Curriculum Development Department, the Examinations Syndicate, the Matriculation Department, the Sarawak State Education Department, the Kapit District Education Office, & the Song District Education Office.
NGOs I've collaborated with include Teach For Malaysia, Generasi Gemilang Foundation, US Department of State. I've also collaborated with individuals like concerned youth, concerned citizens 1 2 3 4, concerned teachers & internationals.
As of Fall 2015, I am a foreign Fulbright scholar & Master of Arts in TESOL candidate at Teachers College, Columbia University, under a fully-paid study-leave with the Ministry of Education. I'm an Education Consultant for Solve Education, a tutor on Gooroo, an education blogger, social media manager, & looking for more opportunities for collaboration.
I've given keynote speeches & presented at several conferences both in Malaysia 1 2 3 4 as well as in the US 1 2 3. I have also taken part in the highly selective 2016 Millennium Train Project & 2016 Progressive Education Institute.
My students have come from all over the world: (alphabetically) Argentina, China, Spain, France, Japan, Malaysia, Russia, South Korea, Thailand, & Ukraine.
I want to make an impact in my field & I have a deep yearning to make a real difference in my country. My heart is with Sarawak. I want to do more. So much more that thinking about it scares me & sharing about it scares me too. What if I were to fail? What if I embarrass myself? What if people laugh at me?
I love wood-oven pizzas, roast pork, playing football & riding motorbikes,
My dream is to one day be able to teach without worrying about titles, awards, tenure, promotions, pay cheques & the favour of my superiors. I prefer to worry about what actually makes a difference.