By Iylia Marsya Iskandar
GOMBAK, 20 August 2019 – The University Management Committee (UMC) has unanimously agreed to maintain the use of mortarboard in the next IIUM convocation ceremony which will be held later this year.
President of the Student Representative Council (SRC), Ahmad Irham Bin Dollah, had verified that the main reason the UMC wanting to resort back to the songkok and scarf with lace at first was to sustain it as the university’s identity.
In April, the SRC disseminated a survey on the students’ preference for the convocation head attire which resulted in 6,549 responses.
The analysis of the result had been submitted to the Office of Deputy Rector and Industrial Linkage (ODRAIL) to be presented to UMC.
The mortarboard marked dominant with 93% votes, while the songkok and scarf with lace received 7%.
The result is evident that the UMC has included the student’s voice in their decision-making process. This is a good start for IIUM where the student’s views play an influence.
Irham further said, “I hope that this mortarboard issue can become an example for every office in IIUM to realise that the students’ voice needs to be considered as they are also the stakeholders of the university.
It is not a good practice for the offices to use the ‘Implement and Observe’ method as this will leave the students unsatisfied with the offices.”
“There are offices such as the Office of Deputy Rector Student Development and Community Engagement (ODRSDCE) that are trying their best to always consult the student bodies on any student issue which is a good initiative towards the empowerment of the students.
With that note, I believe that the Student Union that has more autonomy and power compared to the current SRC will be better in bringing up the students’ voice.”
In 2008, a rally involving 100 students with more than 3,000 petitioned against changing the songkok to the mortarboard, however 11 years later, the mortarboard is now preferred over the songkok.***