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Top Bruneian student graduates from University of Warwick

Vance TanOne of the best young minds from Brunei has graduated from the University of Warwick with a First Class Degree (with Honours).

Vance Tan Zong Hao, who has achieved the top grade in an integrated Masters in Civil Engineering at the University’s School of Engineering, enjoyed massive cheers yesterday as he received his degree from Vice Chancellor Stuart Croft, at a ceremony attended by the Director of Studies from Brunei’s High Commission, Cikgu Ahmad Faisal.

Zong Hao came to the UK on a scholarship provided by Brunei’s Ministry of Education, and he joined the University of Warwick in 2012.

He expressed his gratitude and deepest appreciation to His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan And Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam for granting him the opportunity to pursue higher education in the UK through the Brunei’s Ministry of Education scholarship.

Alongside his consistent academic successes, Zong Hao has also been active on campus and in the wider world.

He is currently Information Secretary for the Brunei Students' Union (in the UK and Eire), and was President of Bruwick (the Brunei Warwick Society) during 2013/14.

Zong Hao was also Student Liaison Officer with the Institution of Civil Engineers and the Institution of Structural Engineers, and Course Representative at Warwick for Civil Engineering in the third and fourth years of his degree. Furthermore, he was the Chair of Warwick Civil and Structural Engineering (CASE) Society in 2014, a society which he set up to inspire younger engineering students to pursue a career in Civil Engineering.

Speaking of his time at the University of Warwick, Zong Hao said “When I was applying for universities through UCAS during my A-Levels, I envisaged that Warwick University would lay an excellent groundwork for my research career and the recent Research Excellence Framework which nationally ranked Warwick 3rd in educational research intensity confirmed my initial intuitions.”

“I joined Warwick with a long-term ambition to contribute sustainably to Brunei Darussalam by advancing the state-of-the-art through my research. I believe that my exposure to an internationally-minded and diverse environment will enable me to play a role in Brunei to remain globally competitive through an integrated knowledge-based economy that is both adaptable and relevant to current markets.”

“To have graduated from a Russell Group university is personally an exciting prospect, and I pay tribute to the Ministry of Education in Brunei as well as the Brunei Students Unit in London who have been very supportive of my academic journey at Warwick. I thank the High Commissioner of Brunei to the UK, His Excellency Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Haji Aminuddin Ihsan Bin Pehin Orang Kaya Saiful Mulok Dato Seri Paduka Haji Abidin for sending his congratulations and appreciate the attendance of Cikgu Ahmad Faisal today at the degree ceremony on His Excellency’s behalf.”

Cikgu Ahmad Faisal, the Director of Studies from the Brunei High Commission, said he’s very proud of Zong Hao: “it’s an honour to attend Vance’s graduation today. We feel really proud of his achievement, and we would like to thank the University of Warwick for its support, not only for Vance, but all the Bruneian students here.”

“I believe that Warwick works hard and is dedicated to supporting Bruneian students, so we’re really proud of the University and we’re proud of our students here. I hope Vance’s achievement will inspire other students,” he went on to say.

Zong Hao is continuing his studies at the University of Warwick, having been accepted to study for a PhD in Coastal Engineering in September 2016, under the supervision of Dr Jonathan Pearson.

The University of Warwick welcomes over 1,000 students from South East Asia each year, with 24 students from Brunei Darussalam currently studying on our campus. Warwick remains a committed partner of the various Brunei government agencies that send their top talent to the University, and is constantly seeking ways of engaging with the country.

Further information:

Luke Walton, International Press Officer

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07824 540 863