Sunday, August 16, 2009

Address at the Conferment of Associate’s Degree

Address at the Conferment of Associate’s Degree of the 3rd Promotion, Bachelor’s Degree of the 3rd Promotion, Master’s Degree of the 3rd and 4th Promotion, Master’s Degree in Information Technology of the 1st and 2nd Promotion (International Program), and Doctoral Degree of the 1st Promotion

National Education Institute, August 5, 2009

Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen, Distinguished National and International Guests, Board of Management, Lecturers, Students, and all Awardees!

Today, my wife and I have a great pleasure to be here in the conferment of associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees to 4,709 graduates of Build Bright University. On behalf of the Royal Government and myself, I would like to commend the university’s board of management, national and foreign lecturers, and officials for their valuable contribution to the development of human resources and higher education in Cambodia. Since the establishment of this university nearly a decade ago, numerous achievements have been made and these will further accelerate our development progress. In particular, today’s conferment represents another significant achievement that will help our society prosper faster.

According to our reports, this institution has been a major partner of the Royal Government in developing human resources, a prerequisite, especially for countries emerging from civil wars, for economic restoration and development. In this sense, I support and further encourage this university to expand its operation and course availability to bring about benefits to the society and human beings in accordance with the Royal Government’s vision of human resource development. In particular, the university has today produced a number of needed intellectuals for developing the country.

Taking this opportunity, I would like to congratulate all the graduates for your hard work and accomplishment. The certificates represent your level of study and knowledge. The certificates also bring about pride to individual graduates, their families, and the country as a whole; in short, this is a pride for all of us.

The successful completion of your courses indeed represents the Royal Government’s effort in building human resources to underpin socio-economic development. Today’s accomplishment stem from the core factors including peace, political stability, security and social order; and the Royal Government’s firm policy on promoting participation from the private sector, and development partners and agencies to ensure sustainable progress in all sectors. What we are seeing also originates from the Royal Government’s proper direction and commitment in restoring and building human resources that will become a concrete foundation for ensuring sustainable growth. These supporting factors have brought positive impact to the education sector. Through this, we can say today’s outcome is just one of many other achievements in our effort to restore and build human resources with competency, quality and productivity for taking part in socio-economic development and poverty reduction.

In general, a notable progress is seen in the education sector, especially at higher education level. This progress cannot be separated from the Royal Government’s proper education policy, and effort of all stakeholders in the education sectors.

Education is costly and long-term investment, and the end result tends to be invisible. However, this investment is a key to productivity and efficiency improvement as education lays out methodologies, formulas, models, and ways to promote growth in other sectors.

The experiences of socio-economic development have shown that intellectual capital has been playing significant role in dealing with challenges and this human capital has also continued to provide good education, knowledge and experiences to general people in the society through composing the written articles and research reports and new social and scientific research findings. Along with that, in the era of knowledge and information technology, the intellectual capital has played more important role in speeding the economic potential, comparative advantage and national competitiveness by trying to attract the maximum benefit from this intellectual capital. These issues have guided the development of education sector and training by highlighting the important roles of all relate stakeholders to this sector, especially the education and training institutions by promoting further efforts to make sure that our education and training will be able to support and respond to the changes of the global economic forces, which are more competitive and fast changing.

At the same time, the success of human resource development has to rely on the ability of education institutions in all levels, especially at the higher education level, which is the highest education institution, by providing both theoretical knowledge and implementation more extensively. Moreover, the success of training can not be separated from the active participation of the private sector and various development partners in the context of globalized market economy. At the present, Cambodia has strengthened and expanded partnership with local and international private sector as it is a leading sector, an engine of economic growth to enhance competitiveness aiming to ensure competitiveness for quality, nobility and prestige.

As for the time being, all higher education institutions have to pay more attention to expand and diversify their training programs to conform to the international standard, in which there are curriculums with more specializations such as management, law, economics, tourism and greeting, scientific technology, agriculture, engineering, mechanics, electronic, small and medium enterprises, which can actually pose the possibility and ability of producing national intellectual capital.

All higher education institutions are required to check at the start whether the programs and specializations created correspond to the objectives of enriching human resources and making comprehensive contribution to development. Along with that, the academic curriculum must adhere to the practical implementation including arts and sports. In this regard, all higher education institutions have to pay attention to the establishment of internship in factories, enterprises, resorts, restaurants and hotels as well as creating the performance of arts and sport competition to make sure our students are better aware and pleasant in their studies. Moreover, I would like to suggest the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport to organize the annual national competition on social science and real science research. This research competition must be urgently implemented. As for those, who receive the award today, they have to be suitably honored because this factor is the pushing mechanism to the research study, which is the foundation for development.

The progress of human resource development, in fact, is the reinforcing factor for the development of other sectors and become the interrelated and complementary mechanism.

These results have, practically, had positive impact on the linkages of social organs by strengthening the culture of peace, ensuring peace and security and social order, respecting human rights and dignity and promoting democracy. Moreover, these achievements have provided tremendous opportunities for the people of Cambodia to actively participate in nation building and development.

In fact, the completion of your studies today is an excellent opportunity for participating in the development of our country according to the special expertise of each individual. Yet, you must be aware that in the current context, the world is now in a stage of intensive competition in all fields and sectors couple with the global economic and financial crisis, resulting in the imbalance between the number of employment in the job market and the number of graduate students, which make them even more difficult in looking for jobs. I this sense, those who graduated today, must try your utmost to seek for jobs in both public and private sectors or be self-employed.

Even though some jobs are not desirable now, they can be used as the stepping stones toward obtaining better and a more desirable job in the future. In parallel, you must keep generating innovative ideas, with a sense of responsibility, leadership and ownership, be disciplined and have good moral and conscience, which would enable you to be successful in your respective future professions.

At the same time, I would like to confirm with degree awardees that the knowledge and technical skills that you have studied so far will become your personal and social long-term investment. Competency, knowledge, innovative ideas, and skills are becoming vital capital in the current global context, which is different from the past when each country relied on raw material resources such as coal, oil and other mineral resources, coupled with the mean of production and other supporting infrastructure, which would enable it to gain competitive advantage over other nations without such resources. Therefore, you must make the best use of your priceless capital appropriately, consciously and innovatively, as well as to keep constantly build your capacity through self-study and research. Obviously, I am optimistic that all of you who are receiving your degrees at the moment will become the core capital who possessed genuine technical skills, knowledge and know-how, and always bear work responsibility with great virtue, moral, and be intellectual of rationality. Starting from the progress of each of you and each of your family who are the social cells, I believe that the whole society will also be able to achieve prosperity.

Before closing, my wife and I would like to wish all Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen, national and internal guests, professors, university officials, especially all degree awardees and students Four Gems of Buddhist Blessings.

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