I spent four warm months on exchange in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia, accompanied by one of my classmates from TAMK. While there, I studied Mechanical Engineering in Taylor’s University Lakeside Campus, “a leading private education institution” in Malaysia.
For me, the exchange in Malaysia came as a big surprise, as Malaysia wasn’t on the original list when picking the possible destinations for the exhange. I had actually already accepted the fact that I wouldn’t be going anywhere this time around, when I got the email from TAMK’s international office, saying that I could go to Malaysia.
After some issues with the student visas, we were able to fly to Malaysia in the beginning of September, and it was a very fast start when we got there. We actually joined the modules two weeks after the beginning of the semester, so all the modules were on the way already and we had some catching up to do. Luckily all the lecturers were very understanding and we got the hang of things very fast. We also ended up swithing two modules after the first day, since they wouldn’t really have benefitted our studies back in Finland.
At the beginning I was a little worried if I would be able to understand everything the lecturers were saying, but I soon realized that was unnecessary and the lecturers were at most parts really clear with their teaching. Altogether, at most parts the teaching in Taylor’s University was really good and the lecturers did a great job giving us clear instuctions and encouraging us to do our best. The modules were mostly interesting and we had many different individual and group projects, which were challenging and often pretty fun. For example, in our Malaysian food heritage module, we traveled to Terengganu in northeast Malaysia to prepare a traditional Terengganu dish Rojak Kateh. While there we cut away tendons from cow’s legs, to make the dish, all part of the school project.
On my spare time I tried to utilize the different sports premises at the campus area by going to the gym and using the swimming pool. I also spent time getting to know some of our local classmates and other exchange students in our school. Other than those, I also tried to travel and see as much of Malaysia and Asia as possible. One of the highlights was when we traveled to Indonesia on our semester break and rented some scooters to drive around with, and went surfing and deepwater fishing in the ocean. We also spent many days just walking around the Kuala Lumpur area and visiting different shopping malls and different attractions.
The studies in Malaysia, or at least in Taylor’s University, were really different from what I had experienced back in Finland. The modules we had, were heavily project based, consisting of designing our own solution to some sort of engineering challenge, designing and 3D modeling a working wheelchair lift for a van, and starting our own crowdfunding campaign on our own selected idea. The way the modules were designed and the guidance from the lecturers, really taught us how to work independently on our own and in a team. That, and just the style of projects were something we hadn’t experienced in our previous studies in Finland.
Like mentioned, our studies in Malaysia differed a lot from our studies in Finland. One big reason was the fact that instead of being part of a Building services Engineering programme like in Finland, we were part of a Mechanical Engineering programme. This meant that the modules we had, didn’t really involve any topics closely related to Building services engineering. Still, there is no doubt that many of the things I learned during the exchange will prove to be benefitial and useful at some point in the future.
Terima kasih! Thank you.