BDEC Resources a leading training and consultancy company based in Malaysia will be in Oxford University with Malaysian Youths for the Youth Leadership Program, a program designed to give college bound high school students the opportunity to live, learn, eat, and play on the campus of Lady Margaret Hall of Oxford University. The programme which will run from the 5th to 11th December has been developed for aspiring young leaders aged from 11 to 17 years old.
Recent research has shown that leadership development has a great impact on youths, even at an early stage particularly in developing countries such as Malaysia. The National Youth Survey on Leadership in America, an online survey conducted by Harris Poll surveyed 1,500 youths between 15 to 17 years old revealed that 76% of respondents believe that the current leaders are focussed on different priorities than what matters to the youth community.
On the other hand, 96% of the youth think leadership is important to address the country’s most pressing issues; but only one in three young people responded that they have the skills required to be prepared to lead. This is an early sign that the youth are not as engaged with mainstream issues and require more programmes and tools to empower them to get involved.
Those that have been developed as leaders at an earlier age will not be as likely to face the problem of youth unemployment which is currently effecting a large percentage of fresh graduates in Malaysia. The Mastering Leadership for Youth Program hopes to address the above issues through instilling confidence and building leadership skills amongst the youth.
With the aim to empower students to become leaders and change makers, the seven day programme allows participants to learn about English language, leadership and teamwork while being inspired to solve social problems through community service efforts with Oxfam. The programme is the brainchild of Sonia Ayesha Dato’ Rashidi, the International Program Director of BDEC who wants to see more youth leaders in the country to deal with the challenging times ahead.
Sonia Ayesha explained “In this programme students will learn to have a greater sense of who they want to be and what they want to do in the future, no matter what career path they choose. Noticeably, they will also develop and exude greater confidence, enabling them ease in whatever they plan to take on.”
“Students will discover what it takes to stand out in today’s ever-changing world. The students will have the opportunity to create and experience things they will never forget and walk away with valuable knowledge that last for a lifetime” Sonia Ayesha who is no stranger to change was thrust into the spotlight as a participant in The Entrepreneur TV show which aired on TV 3 in March 2017.
“I cannot stress how important youth entrepreneurship and leadership programmes are, I was able to start my own business after participating in the TUBE 2.0 program organized by SME Corporation Malaysia.” Sonia is still actively involved in the youth entrepreneurship community and represents the country within the ASEAN region under the Malaysia Association of Young Entrepreneurs.
The programme is modelled on the Oxford tutorial format, with small class sizes and an emphasis on student-based discussion. The programme is designed to be interactive, inspiring and fun and are enhanced by field trips, guest lectures and theatrical shows that provide ‘only in Oxford’ experiences. Participants are encouraged to interact with one another on team building activities as well as classroom activities.
Students will stay at Lady Margaret Hall (LMH), one of the 39 colleges that make up Oxford University. LMH is a historic college located alongside the University Parks and River Cherwell, and is within easy reach of central Oxford. There is full access to LMH’s 12-acre site with gardens, soccer fields, tennis courts and its own boathouse. LMH also has common rooms for group activities and down time with friends.
Students will reside in twin bedrooms on a communal hallway with a dedicated programme coordinator living on site to monitor and support all aspects of the student experience. Additionally, professional porters will staff the gated entrance to LMH 24-hours a day. The cost is inclusive of 3 meals a day with breakfast and dinner taking place in LMH’s magnificent oak-panelled dining room.
Daily activities ensure there is never a dull moment at Oxford. Outdoor activities such as river cruise, walking tours, volunteer works, ice skating and team building activities will be conducted during the programme for students to make the most of their time in Oxford.
Students will come to Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford and actively participate in leadership workshops as well as meet with and learn from experts in, literature, theatre, voluntary service and the arts. The student’s participation in the workshops will be in an open and fun learning environment.
BDEC Resources Sdn. Bhd. was founded by Dato’ Rashidi and Datin Faridah Iriani, and is in partnership with a subsidiary of Oxford University, Oxentia Ltd, where both parties create value by bringing expertise in the form of consulting in technology, entrepreneurship, management as well as in leadership. BDEC Resources has built a steady stream of consulting projects with Malaysian SMES where they look at international sales growth and market penetration.