Sunday, December 30, 2012

Homecoming and Cheque Presentation Ceremony

The banner used to welcome the Finance Minister.
Finance Minister II Dato' Seri Ahmad Husni, our old boy, paid the alma mater a visit. The homecoming was his first after more than 40 years. He left St Michael's in the 70s. Arrived at around 11am, he was  welcomed by the lion dance troupe followed by our very talented Michaelian Military Band. The Michaelian Minister was greeted upon arrival by Tan Sri Lee Oi Hian, chairman of BOG, Mr Michael Lee, PIBG head, OMA president Mr Adrian Tsen and principal Madam Loh Wei Seng. (All four are Michaelians themselves). Also present at the function were Kinta Utara District Officer Tuan Marazlen, his fellow charges, former teachers, teachers and students.
Dato'  Seri Ahmad Husni .. "I learnt many values from St Michael's"
The Minister commended our prefects and scouts who had the courage for striking up conversations with him. "I have been to other schools but there were no communications. St Michael's is different. When I shook hands with the boys, they asked, "How are you Dato' Seri?". They also said, "Welcome to St Michael's, Dato Seri". That was the type of communication I could not get from other schools", he said, generating a thunderous applause from the audience.
Dato Seri Husni, who left St Michael's in April 1971 and was enrolled later in a boarding school, said whenever people asked him which school he came from, he has always answered, "I am a Michaelian".
"In fact all my four sons studied here. St Michael's has given me the values which I treasure very much," said the Finance Minister.
An Auspicious Welcome by a Lion Dance
He later thanked the PIBG head Mr Joseph Michael Lee for extending the invitation and the principal in extending to him such a warm welcome. Dato' Seri later presented an allocation of RM200,000 for St Michael's future development projects.
A Warm Welcome by the Band boys 
Thank you Dato' Seri for the homecoming and hope to see you again one day. I am sure our young Michaelians would like to hear some inspirational stories from you.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Saturday, December 22, 2012

RIP: An Illustrious Michaelian

The Michaelian fraternity extends our deepest condolence to Tun's family. May his soul rest in peace.
The late Tun Lim Keng Yaik
Tun Dr Lim Keng Yaik, former Gerakan chief, and former Minister of Energy, Water and Communications, passed away today at the age of 73. Tun was born on April 8, 1939. He was an Ipoh Michaelian, having attended St. Michael's Institution for his primary and secondary education from 1947 until completing his Form 6 in 1957.
Lim during his student days in Belfast. Pix: The Nutgraph/Tun Dr Lim Keng Yaik's Personal Collection
Lim during his student days in Belfast. Pix: The Nutgraph/Tun Dr Lim Keng Yaik's Personal Collection
He then attended The Queens University of Belfast in Northern Ireland and graduated with a degree in medicine in 1964.
Lim came from a big family of 15 siblings. His parents hailed from Fujian Province in China although his father was born in Tapah.
His foray into politics from medical practitioner began in 1968 when he joined the Malaysian Chinese Association (MCA). Later on, he became the chairman of Perak's MCA in 1974. However a dispute with then president, Tun Tan Siew Sin resulted in Lim having to leave MCA. That was when he joined Gerakan.
Lim became Gerakan's President in 1980.
His last cabinet post was as the Minister of Energy, Water and Communications. He retired as Gerakan chief in 2007 and stepped down from his cabinet post the very next year, before the 12th general election.
In 2011, Wawasan Open University invited Tun Dr Lim Keng Yaik to succeed the Late Tun Dr Lim Chong Eu as its second Chancellor.
Tun Dr Lim Keng Yaik was married to Toh Puan Wong Yoon Chuan and they had three children together, Datuk Lim Si Pin, Dr Lim Poi Giok and Lim Poi Jing.
Lim, with his wife, Toh Puan Wong Yoon Chuan in a 1972 photo. Pix: The Nutgraph/Tun Dr Lim Keng Yaik's Personal Collection
Lim, with his wife, Toh Puan Wong Yoon Chuan in a 1972 photo. Pix: The Nutgraph/Tun Dr Lim Keng Yaik's Personal Collection
In 2011, Lim lost his older brother, philanthropist, businessman and an Ipoh icon, Datuk KK Lim who passed away due to old age.
Lim is best remembered by Malaysian journalists as a politician who was always ready with his candid opinions and sharp wit.
Acknowledgment: Malaysian Digest

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

PMR 2012 Results

Students collecting their results from their respective teachers.
The PMR 2012 results were announced this morning and St Michael's produced 51 straight A candidates. There were 354 students sitting for the examinations. The students turned up at the school with their parents, some as early as 8am, looking eager and enthusiastic. Some said they could not sleep the whole night as they were nervous and uncertain with their score, an indication PMR is still very important and relevant to them. 
There will be another PMR next year (2013) before it is replaced with the new school-based assessment in 2014.  
The school hall was a hive of activities. The same happens when the SPM and SPTM results are released.
SMI principal with some of the top scorers.
"Onward Michaelians! Valiant and True."

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Our Story On September 2, 2010 - The boy who painted the mural

Finally, it's time to update the post I published on October 26. 
The young boy who painted the cloud above the picture of John Baptist De Lasalle (mural below) is now to medical practitioner in Penang. When one of his friends read the post two years ago, he quickly informed Dr Chua Chee Peng, who was undoubtedly thrilled with the article. He waited for the time when he could come back to the alma mater, at least to pay a visit to the spot where he artistically produced his artwork. 
Our fellow Michaelian is currently a consultant paediatrician and neonatologist at Lam Wah Ee Hospital in Penang. 
"I was given the role to paint the cloud. My friends painted the rest," said Dr Chua when we met during the centennial dinner last September. "We were honored to be given the responsibilities by the teachers and we made sure we delivered something for the school", he added.

Student Chua Chee Peng painted the clouds
When we walk up the granite stairs to the first floor, we could see two plaques - the demise of some Lasalle Brothers in Manila and the visit of a Japanese top army officer. What many do not realise is the plaques are actually placed very much later. Behind the thick layer of paint on the wall was a mural depicting the life of John Baptist De Lasalle, the Lasalle Brothers around the world and the education they advocated during the early years.
Work on the mural started in April 1960, initiative of Brother Kevin and his students of art. Unfortunately, the artpiece, over the years, was damaged due to moisture from seepage of water. Discolouration and peeling of paintwork resulted in it being painted over.

King Scouts Of SMI

St Michael's congratulates four scouts for obtaining the prestigious King Scout award from the Raja Muda of Perak on September 29, 2012 in a function held at the state secretariat.
They are from left Lai Kah King, Aaron Keith Ng, Liang Chay King and Phang Ren Jet.
Well done!

What's Up During the Holidays

Scouts painting the school perimeter
School reopens on 2 January 2013 and a group of scouts are taking the initiative to spruce up the school compound by painting the school perimeter. It took them an entire day to get the job done. Thanks to Aw Jia Hang, Lim Wei Chee and Wong Wee Jim for the love of SMI.
During the holidays, many society members are still regularly at the school for practice sessions. The Michaelian Military Band members, for example, are preparing for the concert next year. I notice that plans are underway to ensure that all logistics pertaining to the concert are looked into meticulously. Adviser Mr Liew Boon Ket said the members are practising hard to ensure another successful performance. 
The Michaelian Chinese Orchestra members are also very determined as a concert is also in the pipeline as early as May or June 2013. Performances such as these are opportunities for the members to demonstrate their talents and skills besides giving them a sense of purpose in joining these clubs or societies. 
I look forward to a more positive climate in school next year. As we have already cherishing our past last year, I believe many will agree with me that year 2013 is a year we embrace the future, starting with our present students in establishing the values and setting the moral tone. Only then, St Michael's will pride itself in producing individuals of good characters.  

Monday, November 05, 2012

Happy Birthday To Three Great Men

St Michael's celebrates the birthdays of three great men whose dates of birth come only a day apart - Mr Louis Rozario Doss (November 3), Brother Vincent on the 4th November and Mr Adrian Tsen, today on November 5..
These are ordinary men leading extraordinary lives who have touched the lives of many Michaelians through their dedication and deep devotion to SMI.

Thursday, November 01, 2012


It's an occasion worth attending, for a good cause.


We received a number of themes from our old boys and current students. Below are the themes suggested. Thank you.
1. The Green Blood Flows Between Us
2. Together On Ash We Stride
3.Spirit Of The Green Never Dies -- By Mohamat Asyraf Qutty
4.A Solid Foundation Builds A Better Future - By Mike Chooi Kok Keong
5. Spearheading The New Century- Michaelians Soar To New Heights
6. Onward Michaelians! Valiant And True.

Let us know if you have others AND let us know also which of the above is the BEST for next year's THEME.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

A Vintage Chandelier For The Chapel

To the chapel it goes...Mr Pritam (right) handing over the lamp to Mr John
Mr Pritam Singh had just reached home when he saw an object wrapped in newspapers placed on the hall table. He paid little notice to the item until his wife said that the clinic she works in was undergoing some renovation works. The doctor was giving away a number of items and Mrs Pritam picked that little 'lamp'.  What astonished Mr Pritam was when he unwrapped the package, he saw an imported, frosted, glass mini chandelier. For an antique collector, this piece of gem (must be more than 40 years old) could easily fetch RM500 but then, the dearth of such items could push the value even higher.
He did not think much about selling it or fixing the chandelier in his house, instead Mr Pritam generously gave it away - to the chapel. Mr John Bosco, who also works in the office, will get the chandelier fixed as he has identified the spot. We thank Mr Pritam Singh, our very faithful chief clerk, for his generosity and Mr John, thank you for taking care of the chapel all these years.

What Will Be Our Theme for 2013?

"Cherishing Our Past, Embracing The Future" is the theme used for 2011 and 2012 in line with St Michael's 100 years celebration. In 2002, we used "Education For Inclusive Society" and in 2007, "Quality Michaelians- The Engine For Future Success". "Upholding The Great Michaelian Ethos" was our theme for 2009.
The year 2013 holds a special chapter in St Michael's New Century. The theme has to be catchy, inspiring and propels fellow Michaelians to excel in all areas, keeping up with the dynamism of today's society.
Send us your themes and I will post them here. Michaelians, young and old, spread the word around. Let's see how creative Michaelians are! You can e-mail your themes to

Monday, October 15, 2012

Goodbye Brother Charles

Former Brother Director of St Xavier's Institution dies at 85
Remembering The Lasalle Brothers
Rest In Peace - Brother Charles Levin (right) officiating at the 160th year of Lasallian Education  in Asia at St Xavier's Penang.
GEORGE TOWN: Datuk Brother Charles Levin, a former brother director of St. Xaviers Institution here, has passed away. He was 85. He died [apparently after a fall] of sepsis [the presence in tissues of harmful bacteria and their toxins, typically through infection of a wound] at the Penang Adventist Hospital at 4.14am Sunday.
Levin, whose real name is Karl Henry Theodor Wolff, was born in Germany on [Sat] May 21, 1927. [Levin had lived a total of 31,193 days on Earth.]
His body has been placed at the school chapel of SXI in Farquhar Street for the people to pay their last respects.The wake will be held nightly on 14 and 15 October.
The funeral mass is scheduled for 11.00 am, Tuesday 16 October.
Deepest condolence from the Michaelian fraternity.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

PMR 2012--Best Wishes

There are 354 students sitting for their PMR 2012 this year. The exams, for Form Three students, started last Tuesday and the last papers, Bahasa Cina and Bahasa Tamil, end Tuesday, October 16. All candidates will sit for their Mathematics papers on Monday. Through my observations, the boys are well-prepared. The teachers had gone through with them myriad of enrichment exercises, remedial works and those who needed extra coaching, a programme to guide these students, HALUS, was implemented early this year to ensure they do not fall behind.
St Michael's offers education for ALL and cares for the last, the lost and the least!
We wish all candidates the best!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Centennial Get-Together - A Review

Yes, after a week of rest I am finally back blogging. That past week, my e-mail was filled with messages asking the reason the blog was not updated and some expressed concern that the blog might take a long break as the dinner is over. Well, worry not. The blog will continue to churn out current developments of SMI and announcements to keep all Michaelians informed of happenings.
For me and all of you (more than three thousand Michaelians) who joined in the get-together, the months of planning, time and expenditure involved, were worth it. The fellowship, the very loud laughter, catching up with old times and some who finally found their long-lost classmates at the Centennial Dinner were just invaluable, priceless.
The souvenir program books which were given out that evening. It carries the word 'sau", depicting the Chinese symbol for longevity, vitality and prosperity.
I take my hats off to those who actually made plans months ahead to come back to the alma mater from overseas and then chose to stay back for a few more days in Ipoh before flying back. We had those who could not get tickets to the dinner yet joined in the fun on Saturday morning and returned to the alma mater on Sunday morning to take some photographs and reward themselves with some centennial mementos.Their hearts are still very much with St Michael's. As OMA president aptly said in his welcoming speech, "We are Michaelians Forever".
Many observe that Michaelians are different. Their conversation has always revolved around the catchy "Once A Michaelian, Always A Michaelian",  "Michaelian spirit" and about SMI, their teachers, how they were punished (and still did not know the reasons for that punishment), the years they spent in school etc. But the one that still goes strong and dear to many is, yes, The School Rally.

I was told that one group of a few old boys stayed on until 4.30am that dinner day and continued with their chat at the nearby "dim sum" restaurant. That's great!
For me, SMI still has strong aura and ethos to garner so much spirit from the old boys. When some asked how many VIPs would be at the Centennial Dinner, I told them all are VIPs. Even the IGP who joined us that evening made away with the convention of being accorded a heavy police presence. He chose to walk into the school compound instead of the planned arrangements of having outriders to accompany him right into the school grounds. My salute to Tan Sri, from the class of 1970.
Adding to the festivities of the occasion, the school had also played a pivotal role in ensuring that the compound looked spick and span.

The pavilion was spruced up

The Heritage Gallery was tidied up too for the big day.  
The principal and her team ensured that all facilities in the school were in good order. Damaged taps were replaced and all cisterns in toilets were in good working condition. Doors were painted and repaired. Boys were undoubtedly excited to know that thousands of old boys were coming to visit the alma mater so they made sure the floor was clean and classrooms were tidied up.
Mr Ng Khoon Hong, a Michaelian and founding member of St John Ambulance in Perak, sharing with the boys the services rendered during a landslide incident in Cameron Highlands.
There was an exhibition in the morning, participated by some eight societies which took them a week to prepare. St John Ambulance, Cadet Corp, Military Band among others. The scouts started their work two weeks before the 29th. At the end of the day, all were exhausted but as I said earlier, it was worth the time and efforts. Visitors were very pleased with the preparations and the welcome.
Band members, the ever ready and enthusiastic Michaelians. Photo courtesy of Alex Morris
Scouts...Constructing a Welcome Tower.
Centennial Mass at the school chapel was also organised in conjunction with our Centennial Celebrations. The turnout was amazing as the chapel was filled to the brim with more than 200 turning up for the celebration.

Father Michael Cheah with Brother Matthew at the chapel. Pix by Alex
The congregation at the school chapel. Pix by Alex
The Mass was celebrated by Rt Reverend Sebastian Francis, Bishop, Diocese of Penang. Pix by Alex 
Before that, new wooden pews were acquired for the occasion. We wish to thank Mr Joseph Michael Lee for this initiative. Mr John Bosco, Brother Vincent, Brother Matthew Bay and Mr Lawrence Brindes deserve a mention here in making the occasion a tremendous success.
The pews arrive at SMI

On its way to the Chapel. The pews will be a permanent feature at the Chapel.
Young Michaelians preparing the table numbers and menu for the Dinner. Many were silent heroes in making the Home-Coming a huge success. 
The meeting of great minds - From right (OMA president Mr Adrian Tsen, Tan Sri Lee Oi Hian, Tan Sri Ismail Omar and Mr Hanson Lau) 
A tremendous turnout of fellow Michaelians. Almost all areas of the school were covered, recollection of their formative years at SMI.

Senior Michaelians who will continue to support the Michaelian cause

Hello Brother, pleased to meet you. 

Mr Joseph Michael Lee (PTA chairman) and the IGP
Old Georgians members with Mr Chan Kok Keong and Mr Phoon Chong Chee

Mr Choo Ah Chye with boys from the class of 1987
The get-together ended with a bang. It was an occasion that still lingers in the mind and conversation of those who could make it to the school that day. September 29, 2012 would always be a day to remember. All parties actually worked together so closely to make the occasion meaningful. To the OMA committee, led by Mr Adrian Tsen, my congratulations. It was hardwork but we could see the labour bearing fruits.

See all of you again, fellow Michaelians, next year!


Sons of St Michael's Valiant and True.

Signing off,
Peter Khiew

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Photographs Of Yesteryear - Share With Us

A Scene From An SMI play performed some 60 years ago. Pix courtesy of Old Michaelian Lee Pooi Ngan
Another Image of young Michaelians. Where are these students now? Please let us know.
This will be Michaelians biggest gathering. This will also be an opportune time to share with us possession of old photographs by old Michaelians. The pictures of yesteryear could be ones that were taken with our Brothers, during Sports Day, recess time at the tuck shop, moments with friends on the school bus or simply shots that were taken in the classroom. 
We need the photographs for documentation and posterity purposes. The images are important as to allow us to trace many historical moments we might have overlooked. For this purpose, we are setting up a mini secretariat at the school foyer to scan the photographs (will return the original copies to you), acknowledge the owners and at the same time, ask a few questions about your years at St Michael's.
Those manning the secretariat are Mr Harneak Singh and Mr Thomas Wong.

Cheers from us at SMI.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Program For Saturday 29/9/2012

St Michael's Institution extends a very warm welcome to all Michaelians. It's a wonderful home-coming and a walk down memory lane. Some have not been back for 20 years, some as long as 40 years and there are some who have actually never left St Michael's. Nevertheless, it's still a visit worth making. The blogger, together with the administrative members of the school, the teaching community and all present Michaelians, are honoured to welcome home so many old boys to the alma mater. My special mention to our visiting La Salle Brothers who will join us in Ipoh specially for OMA-organised, "Centennial Dinner". We welcome Brother Visitor Edmundo Fernandez, Brother Thomas Lavin, Brother Anthony Rogers, Brother Ambrose Loke and many other Brothers who are joining in and be part of the great Michaelian celebration! 
Old boys- the very old, the middle-aged and the younger ones- all totalling more than 3000, are going to paint the school red, in our case, green!

The Program For The Day, September 29, 2012 starting 9am

Venue: Parlour/Main Hall - Kiosks selling Centennial Items (tote bags, ball pens, bookmarks, button badges and many, many more), Centennial T-shirts (RM50 each, a pair comes at RM80), Drama T-Shirts (RM20), Valiant & True books (RM25).

Venue: Main Hall (9am-1pm) - Centennial Exhibition/Showcase - Michaelian Military Band, St John Ambulance, Cadet Corps, Michaelian Chinese Orchestra, Science Projects (Winning Entries) & Junior Cadets.

Venue: Scout Den (9am - 1pm) - Open to all. Special Display of Scouting Skills, See how towers are built, gadgets, trophies, shields, etc

Venue: School Chapel (10.30am)- Michaelian Centennial Eucharistic Celebration.  Celebrated by Rt Reverend Sebastian Francis Bishop, Diocese of Penang. 

Venue: School Field - 7.30pm CENTENNIAL DINNER

For details about the program and dinner, e-mail

Below are some numbers for your convenience:
a. Ipoh Taxi       05-2534188
b. Police            05- 2451500
c. Train              05-2540481
d. St Michael's   05-2540418

Will post more if needs arise.

Best wishes and cheers! 

Peter Khiew

Thursday, September 20, 2012

St Michael's Is Getting Busier...& a map

A map which might be of help. Click image to enlarge or print
St Michael's is currently as busy as a bee. Preparations are ongoing at full swing for the Centennial Dinner. Workers from the company supplying the tents and canopies have started work. Students, on the other hand, are watching from afar,  anticipating the excitement that goes with the centennial do which St Michael's has been organising throughout the year.
St Michael's today. Still great and majestic.
This is a Centennial worth celebrating. We see joy and great enthusiasm all year long. Every now and then, the students are witnessing something going on, many times unannounced. That's SMI's ways of doing things and students like it that way.
Those joining the dinner on September 29 will be in for a surprise when they get to see massive tents at the field to accommodate some 310 tables. The 2-wing pavilion will be turned into a food preparation area where cooks and helpers would be extremely busy churning out dishes after dishes for the centennial diners. A stage, complete with a centennial banner and lightings, will also be constructed. You can expect a speech by our Brother Visitor Edmundo and the OMA president Mr Adrian Tsen. There will be some rendition of oldies and later presentation of certificates to the jubilarians. The entire field will be used, not only for the dinner but a place to mingle, catching up with old friends. Three thousand people, all adults, at the same place and time, will create history for being the loudest and the noisiest!
Workers are already started to put up the tents.

From another angle. 
Next post! Program on Saturday morning (29 September 2012)

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Last Call - Budding Golfers

In conjunction with St Michael's Centennial Celebration, the old boys in Klang Valley are organising the annual golf tournament which will be held for the first time in Ipoh.
Those who have yet to register can still contact representatives from Ipoh and KL to ensure a place at the Meru Valley Golf Club. We thank SMI Alumni Klang Valley for organising the event. 

Saturday, September 08, 2012

A Special Publication, "Valiant & True"

- Khaw Soon Hoe (1984) - 5 books
- Michael Chin (1982) 
-Class of 81' has placed an order for 28 books. More are expected!
- SP Lim, old boy residing in KL is getting two books. To pick up on 28 Sept 2012.
-A bulk order from class of 80' - 60 books. 
- SMI Alumni KL - confirmed 20 books.
- Sharman K Michael (Class of 1996) - 10 books. Confirmed!
- Terry Yip -20 books

Quick before the rush during Dinner day. 

Only RM25.00 each. An Excellent Centennial Memento.  
Please e-mail: for details.
Pre-Dinner Purchases available at SMI from September 24 to 28, 2012 from 10am to 1pm at the school foyer (parlour). Cash only. Limited copies. 
Ask for Mr Peter Khiew.  

A special publication, to be ready just for the Centennial Dinner, is one centennial item no Michaelian can afford to give it a miss. Titled, "Valiant & True", the book, produced by the Old Michaelians Association, is a result of months of research, tedious planning and hardwork.
The strong editorial team is ably headed by Mr Louis Rozario Doss and assisted by Brother Vincent, Brother Matthew, Mr Harneak, Mr Thomas Wong, Mr Anthony Lourdes and the blogger. The book carries more than 100 pages of St Michael's illustrious past, its former Brother Directors and their outstanding accomplishments.

Hard at work .. the editorial team during a session at the La Salle Centre, Ipoh.
It also beautifully portrays St Michael's during the war years, the challenges faced and how the Brothers, the teachers, the staff and fellow Michaelians managed the years ahead with determination and courage.
Rare photographs, colourful illustrations and old images of all things St Michael's are some of the highlights you can expect in the book.
"Valiant & True" carries our vision and our inspirations. It is the way forward in our quest to make St Michael's a port which continues to assist, to inspire and to educate.
Will keep all of you updated on this!!

Note: Oh yes. Copies are limited. For those who wish to get hold of the books earlier, it's possible. They will be on sale a few days before the dinner. During the dinner, a kiosk will be set up at the parlour.