Monday 25 March 2013

Easter Market

The weather is gradually becoming warmer. The snow has all melted. *yay* Let's see just how warm it will be. I'm very curious. :p

Such a terrific conversation starter eh, the weather?

So the other day I went to the Easter Market. It was on the last day (Sunday) and I traveled there alone by train.  It was raining so I don't think any of my friends would want to go with me. LOL  And it's easier this way, don't ya think? It's in another city, by the way. * adventurer mode on* Apparently the Wiesbaden Easter Market is pretty popular.

Ehsan Google
Merry go round and round, round and round..  Lalalala
It was raining, which explains the cold and why I could not feel my fingers, let alone snapping pictures here and there. But you can get the idea, pretty much.

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How I Got the Yayasan Khazanah Watan Scholarship

This post is a response to all the questions I got in FB. I wondered why so many people were asking about 'interviews' out of the blue. It turns out that Yayasan Khazanah (YK) is accepting applications for its scholarship program. 

I am not sure if I can offer much help since my experience was way back in 2010. Maybe the screening process is different now, I'm not sure.

So let's cut the chase and go straight to introduction. 

YK offers a few scholarship programs. Watan is for local university students and Global is for those who aim to go abroad. Basically these are the two most related to Malaysian undergrads. For more info, feel free to visit YK's website. 

Since I'm a Watan scholar I could only share the 'Watan' experience. 
Let's start with the application process. 

The minimum requirement is 3.5 GPA from pre-uni / matriculation / diploma or 3A 1B in STPM.
Obtained admission or currently in the first year of Bachelor program. [Not offered for foundation / diploma level].
Disciplines? Only business, bio-sciences, engineering and medic.
Active in co-curriculum and show exemplary leadership skills.

To those who wanted to apply but stop halfway, doubting yourself. Get a grip! Just do it!
If you don't try, you'll never know. Remember that!

Kadang-kadang orang yang 4flat pun tak tentu dapat scholarship kalau bukan rezeki.
Rejection is a step forward.

Even now, sometimes I could not believe that I'm a part of YK. It's so surreal!

So the application process is done online. Just filled the form without any hard copies. 

In Watan cases, there are 3 stages of interviews altogether. For Global, there's an extra stage.

The first interview/assessment was held at Mercu UEM, KL Sentral. The big hall was arranged as per Harry Potter's OWL examination. Tengok HP tak, tengok tak? Ramai candidate. Cuak! And there were more than one session apparently. 

It was an IQ test comprising of several sections (calculation, logical, social etc). It was very tense because every section was timed. With the loud ringing bell, we have to move on to the next section. My experience? Twas quite hard and I did not finish -.-' It was over in less than an hour. 

Luckily though, I passed the minimum requirement. The second stage was then held at PNB Darby Park. The first taste of many YK's hospitality :D It was a whole-day-long assessment center. *I believe I could not divulge too much info here* Teheee.. 

First event was the one-to-one interview. Secondly is a group discussion and presentation. Or should I say debate?  Thirdly is the written essay. Since YK outsourced this process to a consulting company, you can be rest assured that the interviewers are very much experienced in assessing people, potential and they're good in making you loss for words, too. It happened to me. It was a very long day, the second stage. 

After that, you'll have the third and final stage which is the interview with the senior management. Held in their office at KLCC. Don't bother to go crazy reading all about Khazanah (like what I did) because what you'll get is only 10 minutes. 10 minutes to answer the given 3 questions and to pose some questions of your own. When you're nervous, trust me you'll talk like a bullet train. So be prepared with a kick-ass questions to show them what you're worth. Just be yourself.

All the questions are about yourself, don't worry. Just be prepared in advance. Make sure you know yourself well and above all, brush up your speaking skills. Be confident! Be humble.

Ini gambar during the third stage interview.
Good luck!

Memories with YK Family.

Lots of love.
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Seri Iskandar

I have always said that the best phase of my life was during my diploma days. It is indeed true. I learnt a lot of lessons; life lessons. I'd enemy but above that; I had great friends.

UiTM Seri Iskandar, 2007 - 2010.

Terima kasih kepada mereka yang senantiasa berada di sisi sepanjang zaman kegelapan dan zaman kenaifan.

First and foremost, what would my life be without such an awesome person and even a greater friend. Whose family had become mine, who made me cry uncontrollably when she delivered Zhafran *yup, she's a mom now* Thank you Laila for making my days at UiTM so happy and filled with warmth. *cry*

Teman makan saya, teman netball saya. 
Though she's never in the netball team, she will ALWAYS be at the court supporting me. *crying even more* Always, without fail.

Her wedding day. I sincerely pray from the bottom  of my heart that you and your family will be blessed always.
Right after our graduation, hanging out at Telok Batik  :)

My roommate, my classmate, my best friend.

Zhafran, her baby boy :D
Cerita kedua, perihal bola jaring. Tuah NC yang tak pernah kalah setiap sem. Daripada first sem sampai sem terakhir. Thank you UiTM for providing a sport complex. Berlatih netball, setiap kali tournament, setiap kali kawan-kawan akan turun sokong. The same goes as football team. Semangat assabiyah yang kuat.

Ingat tak Al masa latihan wakil UiTM, kau cakap urat kaki kau macam nak terputus berlari and kau sumpah tak nak main netball dah. Kononnya lah!! Hahaha Le passion towards netball is too strong.

Al-Adawiyah @ Al Sepet, captain netball yang tak jemu menjerit semasa latihan. Oh! How much I miss those days.
Penyokong setia team bola sepak Inter-part. 
Tak lengkap cerita UiTM tanpa Ezo rasanya. My friend, awesome goalkeeper with his award.
Girl's night out at UTP.  Festival of Colours kalau tak silap.
Kemuncak zaman kegemilangan di UiTM. Presentation Entrepeneurship . It's a huge deal. The same level as presentation of the project paper.
Favourite pastime; eating and laughing. In short, being happy.
Aidil Fitri 2010. Convoy.
Menjelang test, semua baik di tempat duduk. 
Selca at a British Fort, Pangkor Island.
Before we graduate, we went to Pulau Pangkor. Just the five of us. I must tell  ya, it was exciting.
Another good friend of mine, Arif. I just love this picture so much. Teheee!
Mien, need no recognition kot. :)

Dan masih, we meet after UiTM.  :)
 I know you're  doing extremely well now and I am extremely utterly proud of you!!
UiTM organized their Dean's List Award Ceremony every freaking semester ya'all!!
And with that 3 years, I graduated with Diploma in Accountancy.

ps - Ye, post ini memang tiada motif. I just miss the good old days and and the good people.
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Sunday 17 March 2013

Guten Tag!

Warning : This is gonna be a long one. Very long.
Greetings from Germany, people! It's been a week here and the time has come for me to share some interesting stories. Interesting ke tidak, you be the judge. :D

For those who are wondering, let me just answer your questions here. Adik-adik junior yang banyak bertanya, meh akak jawab kat sini. :) FH Mainz, Germany is Uniten's partner uni. They'd signed a MOU which means we can go study abroad for a semester and apply for credit transfers. And no, it is not free. LOL The students will have to pay for the Tuition Fees to Uniten. If you've chosen a non-partner uni, you'll probably need to pay the tuition fees directly at the foreign uni, at three times the actual cost because you're a foreigner. Biasa lah tu kan.

But since FH is a partner uni, the tuition fees are paid according to the usual rate (ie RM765) per subjects. Lebih kurang lah. And all the other expenses; flight tickets, visa, accommodation bla bla bla haruslah ditanggung sendiri. In my case, terima kasih YK :)

Adik-adik yang berminat to be part of this, silalah baca di sini or just set an appointment with the Deputy Dean, Dr Yati.

Bersyukur for these food I brought along. Halal food is hard to find here.
And here goes my tale of an exchange students.

My flight to Frankfurt was on the 8th of March. A million thanks to those who showed up at KLIA to send me off. *group hug*

Truth be told, the 13-hour flight seems daunting at first but I survived it. The constant stream of food helped. A lot! Teheeee

Arrived at 6.30 in the morning to a welcoming face, Sandra. She's my TOM (Tutor of Mainz) Buddy. It's some sort of facilitators thingy, only on a much personal basis because every international students get one and it will last for the whole semester.

We then went to Mainz by train, a 20 mins journey.

Accommodation wise, I got a single apartment at Oberstadt (pronounced O-bersh-tad). It is not that far from the campus. And I love it because it's just the opposite of le tram station and I will get to pass by the town every single day. Yehooo!

View from the tram station. That orange building is my apartment.
And here's the entrance. Sebut Oberstadt sudeyhh.. Panjang bebenor.

Fachhochschule - FH and Berliner Str - Oberstadt. It looks far, but it's not. The places I circled are where the mosque is. Haven't got the chance to go there yet, though. 
Masuk-masuk bilik and you'll come to this! I don't like bright  light  so most of the time , tirai itu ditarik habis,.  Cool kan?
Le bed and workstation. Workstation sangatt.. Indah suci je dinding tu kan. Well, not for long! Will  decorate it soon!
That's my kitchenette.  There's a mini fridge, too where I store all my ice cream stocks. Hahaha  Ada planner di situ, I just can't live without one. 5 A4's = 5 months.
I don't have an oven. Guess how I re-heat my sandwich? Teheeee
My own post box. Don't ask me what it says. Google!
Here in Germany, ALL and I mean ALL shops, shopping complexes and whatnot are closed on Sundays. Toksah nak berangan nak buat girls day out ke hape on Sunday. Dok rumah dendiam.When I asked Sandra what they usually did on Sundays; jawapan beliau- It's a day to recover from hangovers. Sabtu adalah hari bersuka ria.

My first week here is for the orientation. Berbeza langit dan bumi from Malaysia. Di sini, tak ada aktiviti kanak-kanak menari sini sana, no waking up at 4 in the morning, takde jalan pegang tangan. Tak ada beratur panjang, tak ada fasi terjerit-jerit. Here the students are treated as adults. Jadual orientasi agak lengang. Just meet for important talks, briefings, tour etc. We even got time to do some excursions. Maksimum sehari 3-4 jam je orientation. Mampu? Heaven gile fasilitator kat sini kan.

There were approximately 30 international students and we went through a complete different programs than the other new students since we're gonna only stay here for a semester. Got to know a lot of people. Ada dari Polland, Hungary, Portugal, Korea (gosip Running Man sokmo), Thailand (my clan; LOL) , France, USA, Budapest, Slovakia and Prague.

Mariana, Ania and Michaela. :)

And here's Sandra, my TOM Buddy. She's addicted to RM, too!! What a coincidence. Memang ada geng la kan. Haha
So what else I wanna share here? Oh yes. The notion you had in your mind about German people; that they drink a lot is VALID people! They had party all the time. I've been to two, just because it's part of the orientation week. Yup. You heard it right. Awesome,eh? I've wriggled out of the other two parties successfully, without looking anti-social. Haha!

Orientation game 1
Orientation game 2
Pre-party. Yup. I wore kurungs :D With Hungarian and Korean friends.
Michaela, Pollish girl. She's here with her boyfriend. How sweet is that? 
You guys should know just how much I hate the Harlem Shake dance. I think it's just a stupid excuse for  people to go crazy. But as expected, they made their own version of HS dance. Chaos everywhere! Haha. It was fun to watch though.

We also went to the Opel plant. Opel is a car manufacturer, just like Proton. And apparently, they have the most modern automobile plants in the world. It was very big and we went with a tour to see everything. I was very impressed! But sadly cameras were off limit in the actual plant.

Then we went to this BIG warehouse where they stored all Opel's car  from the very first model to the latest. 
Nice one!

Technology, technology. I was very impressed because a single production line could assemble over 40 models of car, each with different engines. The robots are programmed to know each and every specifications of the cars. Since they only produce the cars on orders (just-in-time system), they could be producing 20 different car in a day, all in a single production line. (Saya memang nak menekankan pasal single production line). Besides that, Opel also offered 12 years warranty against corrosion. Sweet!

Moving on to the university itself, FH Mainz consisted of 3 faculties each with their own separate buildings. And my faculty looks like this.

Peta kawasan. 
It is a small building, small tak small mana lah sebenarnya. Macam AA dengan AB combined together. Besar la jugak compared to Uniten. Ada wifi kat kampus which is very nice. I've done my timetable tapi I definitely need to take more subjects. At the moment I'm taking International Social Responsibility, Applied Rational Decision Making, Project Management, Information Management and German Language. There're 6 subjects but I have Tuesday and Wednesday off. How is that possible kan? On Monday my class started at 5. Terlebih heaven niee. 

Plus, some of the subjects will end in May right after the final exam. The official final exam is in July though. Subjek yang bertemu 2 jam seminggu ni ha yang habis awal. After May, I'll be having even less subjects. It is easier for me since I have finished my syllabus and I can choose the subjects freely. Value added subjects are the main priority, though. We'll see how it goes.

And these are the bits of everything I wanted to share. 

The public transportation system deserved a big round of applause ya'll. Both for the trams and buses. They are never late. In fact, they always arrived earlier than scheduled. It is also very comfortable, looking good and clean. 

You can hardly find any motorbikes. I've not seen even one since I came here. But bicycles are very popular. There are many automatic bicycle rental machines you can find. Insert some coins, and you're good to go. Cool kan? Tunggu je salji ni cair memang tu aku nak pergi dulu.

Here, they are crazy over bicarbonate drinks. Air mineral pun ada gas. Like, hello? Dah la ada gas, pahit pulak tue. Sangat berbeza dengan tekak kita. Rupanya bukan setakat air mineral; beer, lemonade, juices. Semua duk produce with gas.

What I love the most so far? The abundance of Eis Cafe or Ice Cream Cafe. Everywhere weyh!! Saya selaku penggemar aiskrim tegar memang terasa keindahan hidup di sini. But have to be careful because some ice cream flavors are infused with alcohol. Asal nak beli vanilla je sokmo ada bourbon essence. 

Makanan ruji mereka adalah roti. But don't expect any fluffy bread. There's none. All the breads are hard, ya know macam baguette. Nasib baik I can still accept it. In fact my favourite bread is this. Murah weyyh. Baru 13 cent sebijik. Hahaha. Kepada peminat Aunty Anne's memang akan kecewa dengan pretzel kat sini. Jauh panggang dari api. It tasted weird. Kelat. Jarang ada yang manis katanya. Bakery pun ada di mana-mana. Kadang-kadang kat satu kawasan tu ada lebih dari 5 bakery. Macam kedai makan la kat Mesia. Hoho

I was told that the buildings here are not allowed to be any taller than the Cathedral. Makanya, bangunan semuanya merendah diri je la kan. Tapi. ada dua bangunan yang against that rules. Memang la perasan tapi takde pulak gi telek bangunan apa.

Nampak bangunan nie?
But on closer look,

KPMG rupanya kawan-kawan. :D                                        
The German people are avid coffee drinkers. I don't understand this coffee craze. At all. I drink tea. :)

Integriti. Haaa. Tersedak kau baca. Integriti sini, integriti sana. Wanna learn integrity, learn it from the Germans. In these following aspects je la tapi. Doing the right things though no one is watching. Isu laluan pejalan kaki. Even though it is late at night and there's no car whatsoever on the road, they will WAIT till the lights turned green. Kau mampu? *applause* Secondly, when you're on the bus or the train, no one will inspect your ticket. The ticket machine is located at every station. Jadi tugas anda adalah untuk membeli tiket sebelum masuk. The assumption is that kalau anda masuk, anda ada tiket. Senang je la nak tipu kan sebenarnya. Katanya once in a while ada orang check tapi setakat ni takde lagi eden nampak. The fact that they do not impose strict internal control amazed me. Kagum!

Seterusnya, recycle. They do take this seriously. Tong sampah kat luar tu ada 3-4 untuk assist recycle. When you buy any mineral water or juices or even a beer, you will have to pay what they call 'pledge' of 25 cents for every bottle. Ada banyak mesin automatik recycle nie. So when you go to the automatic machine and put in your bottles, you'll get back your pledge. Bijak kan? 25 cents dengar macam sikit tapi boleh beli roti 2 ketul dah tu. Hahaha 

The next thing I notice about Germans is tulisan mereka yang tidak berapa kemas. Haaa gittew. Ingatkan aku seorang je perasan. Budak Korea pun tegur jugak. Pelik jugak sebab everyday languange diorang memang guna tulisan rumi, bukan tulisan lain macam Korea and Thailand. Jadi kita sebagai rakyat Malaysia harus bersyukur masa sekolah rendah dulu banyak buang masa tulis atas buku latihan garis merah biru tu. Ingat tak ada guna kan tulisan berangkai? Ia membantu tulisan kita menjadi cantik ye rakan-rakan. Haruslah kawan-kawan Jerman cemburu tengok tulisan mak yang kemas nie. Hahahaha *gelak jahat*

Pasal salji. Adoi. Don't even let me start. I thought I was coming for the summer semester. Tetiba dengan kuasa Allah saljipun turun. Siap blizzard lagi. Nasib baik ada prepare a few coats just in case. Hari ni salji, esok sunny, lusa blizzard. Tak tahu la bila proper summer nak start. Kat Mesia dah biasa berlindung dari matahari kan? Kat sini amek kau. Semua berebut nak spot yang ada direct sunlight. Kelakar. Heee

Saya juga menggemari grocery stores mereka. Haha! Macam Giant actually tapi good quality stuffs. Can't help but to buy there everyday. I have a problem, yes I know. Hahaha Seronok benor shopping groceries. Memacam ada. Ingredients semuanya murah-murah. Memang stok kat dapur ada sokmo. Tapi ye lah kan. Nak masak pun limited sikit sebab daging, ayam semua tu payah nak jumpa yang halal setakat nie. Asia Market pun tak sempat pergi lagi. Biskut-biskut, aiskrim, roti. Biasa la tu. Rasa nak makan panas sikit, gi Subway. Tuna sandwich baru 2.7 Euro. Itu murah rakan-rakan. Entahlah. Aku rasa makanan kat sini memang murah-murah. Baju, kasut semua dah makan puluh-puluh Euro. Samala kat Mesia. Untuk penjelasan lebih lanjut, sila baca ini. Tajuknya kos hidup lebih murah di Jerman.

Restoran kebab memang banyak. Minat betul diorang dengan kebab nie. Dan jangan risau,memang takkan kebulur. Haha For example, ini lunch saya hari ni

Fish sticks with Tortelinni in Cheesy sauce. Memang apa  aku masak, aku campak cheese.  LOL
Seronok la kan masak sendiri ceritanya. Panjang gittewww post kali ni. Nah, hadiah.

Salam sayang dari Jerman.

Doakan supaya iman kental.

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