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.