Programmes offered without Malaysian Qualifications Agency nod make their degrees worthless, foreign students also face visa woes
KUALA LUMPUR : Two students, representing more than 840 others at Limkokwing University of Creative Technology (LUCT), have taken aim at the institution for offering programmes that lack Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA) accreditation, making their degrees worthless.
Muhammad Ameer Fakhri, a local, and a foreign student identified only as Muhammad shared their plight during a press conference hosted by Bangi MP Ong Kian Ming at the DAP headquarters today.
Muhammad came to Malaysia in 2019 to obtain a master’s degree in business administration, but the course offered at LUCT had its accreditation revoked last year.
“It was only in my last semester that I found out the university failed to get accreditation (for the course).
“They told me that I could finish the course, but without accreditation.
“The university management told me to get another certificate, but they do not know what programme we should take.”
He said hundreds of foreign students arrive every year to study at LUCT, only to find out later that their courses are not recognised either locally or globally.
These students also find it difficult to extend their visas after the accreditation is revoked.
“We were told that to obtain a new visa under a new programme, we had to go back to our home country,” said Muhammad.
“But if we go back, how can we be sure that we will obtain a new visa so that we can return to finish our studies?”
Ameer said he originally registered as a computer science student, but was told to change his course to mobile computing as it had better prospects.
He discovered later that the course is unaccredited.
“All the students kept pushing for accreditation, but failed. They told us not to worry. But they kept giving us false hope.”
Former deputy education minister Teo Nie Ching, who was present at the presser, said MQA revokes accreditation if a course does not follow the syllabus, or if the academic staff do not have the proper qualifications.
“The Higher Education Ministry can instruct the affected students to take another course, or study at a different institution.
“The cost must be borne by the university, and not the affected students.
“At the moment, the certificates given by the university are worth nothing. The students might not even get a job,” she said, adding that LUCT must take corrective action and improve its standards.
Meanwhile, lawyer Syahredzan Johan pointed out that the affected students could initiate a class-action suit against the institution.
The students in a letter demanded that LUCT obtain accreditation for its courses, and if it is unable to do so, to compensate them.
Those who want to further their studies at other universities also demanded that LUCT arrange a credit transfer without forcing foreign students to leave the country due to visa rules.
We students request to be released from the shackles of Limkokwing, and to be allowed to take our time and finances elsewhere so that we may continue our education at a respectable institution.
“Requests made by students to have their credits transferred to a different university have also not been successful,” said the letter.
“Our requests have not been entertained by Limkokwing University, nor our credits accepted as a result of the revocation of accreditation.
“The international students request to have their visas transferred to a different university without having to leave the country, as due to the pandemic, we would not be able to return without having to pay the hefty costs of air travel and quarantine.”
By ; AZRIL ANNUAR – THE VIBES