By Kaiyisah Nurulsyakur Yusof
You may not realise that the Students’ Representative Council (SRC) of IIUM is doing its best to tackle many issues that happened in IIUM campus, particularly relating to the welfare of students and the academic issues.
To find out more on what the SRC had actually done to help the students I recently conducted interviews with two student leaders, as part of my Journalism assignment.
“SRC has a big role to bring the voice of IIUM students in all aspects such as in academic, welfare of students,” said Muhammad Aiman Azahan who is the President of SRC IIUM 2015/ 2016. He said that they also must take an action immediately when there is any issue raised by the students.
According to co-Chairperson of Welfare Secretariat of SRC IIUM 2015/ 2016, Siti Hajar Azahari, the Welfare of SRC for current tenure is focusing on five matters which are financial assistance, facilities issues, students’ affairs, security issues, and any arising issues.
She explained some of the current issues that happened around the campus lately such as the issue on final examination schedule, sisters’ safety and financial assistance.
Regarding the issue of final examination reschedule that was raised a few weeks ago, it happened when the Academic Management and Admission Division (AMAD) issued a letter and suddenly decided to change the final examination schedule. In the letter, it stated that the university had decided that there will be no final examination on Sunday for semester 1, 2015/2016. Final examination that falls on 3/1/2016 is re-scheduled to 14/1/2016 and the paper on 10/1/2016 is scheduled to 15/1/2016.
Many students disagreed when the letter’s content that went viral on Whatsapp and Facebook. It is because many of the students had already bought their tickets to go back to their home. In fact, if this matter happens, it will also affect IIUM staffs and lecturers.
Therefore, SRC Exco members had met the Deputy Rector of Academic and Planning, Prof. Torla Hassan, to get an explanation on that matter. He gave an advice for SRC to meet the Rector directly. Then, the SRC did a petition calling for five thousand students to support the request to change back to the final examination schedule.
Following his advice, SRC Exco members had managed to meet with the Rector a day later and submitted the petition to her. She then agreed to revert to the earlier schedule. The new policy of not having final examination on Sunday will only start during the next semester.
Other than that, there is also an issue on sisters’ safety. There were some cases of intruders and trespassers who had entered the sisters’ mahallah at midnight. There were also cases of wild dogs that entered sisters’ mahallah and bit the kitten until they died and had disturbed the sisters. Therefore, SRC had met with staffs from the Office of Security and Management (OSEM) and discussed the students’ safety matter.
Besides that effort, the SRC members will continue with ‘I-Defense 2.0’ project. This project is a free martial arts learning for sisters only. Indeed, the SRC will also do collaboration with the Mahallah Representative Council (MRC) to do ‘I-Patrolling’.
The Welfare Exco also said that she received many cases on the common financial problem, in the end of the semester, whereby many students especially those who are taking PTPTN do not have enough money. Besides that, there are also students whose parents had passed away and needed to support their siblings. Therefore, the SRC team had met with Scholar Fund – an NGO that provides scholarship funds.
SRC members also planned to have a collaboration with IIUM Alumni in helping the students to settle their fees for example. Besides that, the SRC will also do a project on ‘I-Concern’ and ‘I-Infaq’ to help and assist students faced with financial problems. Indeed, the project on ‘Suspended Meal 2.0’ – free meals for needed students – is also being continued to help the students.
I produce here the full text of my interview with Muhammad Aiman Azahan:
Can you explain your background?
I am Muhammad Aiman Azahan. Currently I am a third year, first semester student. I’m studying in Ahmad Ibrahim Kulliyyah of Law (AIKOL). Currently I am the President of Students’ Representative Council (SRC) IIUM 2015/2016.
Can you briefly tell the background of SRC?
SRC is a council in IIUM that represents all undergraduate students. The SRC Exco members were elected by the general campus election last September. SRC Exco members are moving forward for the betterment of the university.
What is the role of SRC?
To bring the voice of IIUM students in all aspects; academic, welfare, etc. We also must take an action whenever there is any issue to be raised.
What are the current issues that have been of concern to SRC
Firstly, the issue on Mahallah procedure in giving summons to the students. One student raised it in the IIUM Online group in Facebook. For your information, the issue happened to a brother, on Monday evening. He was summoned by the Mahallah Officer. He found the summon paper in his room due to reason of bringing the electric guitar to Mahallah.
So what is SRC’s action towards this matter?
SRC and MRC will take necessary action together. SRC also will get a clarification from Residential Unit in STADD.
Do you think SRC needs to raise this issue with the authority?
Yes, because this issue will affect all of IIUM students if the same procedure is implemented in IIUM.
Is there any other latest issue?
Yes, regarding on the Final Examination Timetable. It happened when AMAD issued a letter and suddenly changed and postponed all examinations for Sunday schedule to 14 & 15 January 2015.
Why did the SRC raise this issue and who will be affected?
This matter is really important because it will affect all IIUM students, staff and lecturers because many students have planned their holiday and already bought transportation tickets to go back to their homes.
So what is the SRC’s action?
We met Prof. Torla, Deputy Rector (Academic) to get an explanation and he advised us to meet the Rector directly. Then we did a petition from five thousand students to support the request to change back the schedule. A day later, Alhamdulillah we managed to meet with the Rector and submitted the petition to her. She then agreed to revert to the earlier schedule. Alhamdulillah.
The following is the text of my interview with Siti Hajar Azahari:
Can you explain your background?
My name is Siti Hajar Azahari. Currently I am a second year, second semester student. I am from the Kulliyyah of Education, majoring in Teaching in Arabic as Second Language (TAASL). I am currently co-Chairperson of Welfare, SRC IIUM 2015/ 2016.
What is the focus of Welfare Secretariat for this tenure?
We focus on five matters which are financial assistance, facilities issues, students’ affairs, security issues, and any other arising issues.
What is the role of SRC?
SRC has a motto: “Students’ Representative Council is a council of the students, by the students, and for the students”. SRC is picked by students to voice out students’ voice and rights. Besides that, SRC also has to be a middle man or mediator between students and the authority of IIUM.
What are the current issues raised by the Welfare Exco?
Firstly, regarding the Final Examination Reschedule. It happened when the final examination already endorsed by the Senate, but suddenly was rescheduled, which would affect the students because they already bought their transportation tickets to go back to their home.
So how did you solve this problem?
We did a petition.
Is there any other issues?
Yes, the financial assistance. Many students especially those taking PTPTN don’t have enough money at the end of the semester, and there are also students whose parents had passed away and needed to support their siblings.
So what is the SRC’s action on this issue?
We met with Scholar Fund. It is one of the NGOs. We also have a collaboration with IIUM Alumni to help the students in need of assistance to settle their fees, for example. Besides that, we also do a project on ‘I-Concern’ and ‘I-Infaq’.
How about the sisters’ security issue?
Regarding the security issues such as the intruders that entered the sisters’ mahallah at midnight and the issue of wild dogs in sisters’ mahallah, we met with OSEM and will continue with ‘I-Defense 2.0’ project. We will also do a collaboration with MRC to do ‘I-Patrolling’. ***