AFD and CES Graduation

The University of Cambodia (UC) celebrated the eighth graduation of 347 students from the Academic Foundation Year program
and 250 students from the Center for English Studies (CES) program on September 4, 2010, at the UC Conference Center. The event was jointly organized by the UC Academic Foundation Department (AFD) and CES.

In delivering his congratulatory remarks to students, Dr. Y Ratana (Dean for Undergraduate Studies and Director of AFD) noted that out of the 347 graduates, 34 students earned a “B+” average and will receive certificates for outstanding performance along with their certificates of completion, and nearly 40 percent of the graduates were young women. He also offered advice to the young graduates, encouraging them to learn from their weaknesses and from the strongest students for future academic success. After telling the graduates that learning is an endless process, Dr. Ratana offered his final words of advice to the students as they prepare to enter university life: “Learning through sharing and giving to one and another, learning through discussion, experiment,
and writing—these are good methods for achieving in academia.”

Afterward, Mr. Pay How (Associate Dean for Arts and Humanities and Director of CES) praised CES students for completing the six levels of the program and encouraged them to utilize the three core values they gained through experiences at CES (knowledge, skills, and attitude) for the benefit of their future lives. Out of the 250 CES graduates, 104 of students were female, and a majority will enroll in the UC Academic Foundation Year program in Term I in October (an additional 29 students graduated from the CES program on September 10).

“We come from different parts of the country and world, but we all have the same goal, vision, and passion in education,” said Mr. Pay How. He continued, “Our goal is to prepare all students for university studies, employment opportunities, and leadership. And our challenge is to provide students the support they need to reach their goal in life.” Sok Chhorda, a Business Management major in the College of Management and representative of AFD graduates, gave an address on the essential components of achieving high grades. She identified internal factors (self-awareness and family support), external factors (UC’s Code of Conduct and teachers), and knowledge of English as crucial to student success. She also had two final recommendations for her fellow graduates: understand the benefits of each course taken, and aim for academic and personal life-balance.

Before presenting the certificates to the graduates, H.E. Dr. Kao Kim Hourn, UC President, congratulated students on their completion of the programs and delivered an eloquent motivational speech. He applauded their courage and commitment in pursuing a higher education, noting that learning in English is not easy for Cambodian students, but has many rewards for their future academic and career pursuits. In continuing their studies, these students join an esteemed intellectual learning community at UC and face competition from their peers, which Dr.Kao encouraged them to embrace.

“Competition makes you stronger,” he proclaimed. “It makes you aim to be the best at school and in the workplace, so welcome competition because, once you are the best, people will follow what you do.” At the end of his address, Dr. Kao delivered
a powerful message to the students by encouraging them to work hard in school and in their profession so they can contribute
to strengthening their families, communities, and this country. H.E. Samraing Kamsan (Member of the UC Board of Trustees and Senior Advisor to UC President), Dr. Angus Munro (Vice President for Academic Affairs), and Mr. Peter Tan Keo (Vice President for Strategy, Development, and International Cooperation) assisted Dr. Kao in presenting graduation certificates to the happy students.

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