From Graduates to Entrepreneurs in Malaysia

In 2010, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM or National University of Malaysia) established CESMED, the Centre for Entrepreneurship and Small and Medium Enterprise Development. UKM-CESMED grooms students to become entrepreneurs by providing experience-based learning, consultancy, and training. Its main focus is on human capital development and technology adoption, with special attention giving to addressing gender inequalities within Malaysian society.

UKM was founded in 1970 with the vision of developing a learned, dynamic, and conscientious society in Malaysia. It is consistently ranked among the best universities in the region, as noted by ranking systems such as QS and the Times Higher Education Supplement. It is located in Bangi and it annually enrolls more than 23,000 students from more than 30 different countries.

UKM-CESMED participates in the Youth Economic Participation Inititative (YEPI) through a program called “Developing Shared Service-Learning to Support Graduate Transformation and SME Development”. This program has two components. One focuses on basic entrepreneurship training for undergraduate students. The second is a “Finishing School” training that enhances technical and business skills for alumni through in-house classroom training. This classroom training includes three tracks: Technocount, focused on accounting; Netpreneur, focused on online marketing, and Turnaround, focused on crisis and conflict management.

As the program expands its connection to The Talloires Network, it will also expand its reach to other universities in the region. These include: National Cheng Kung University (Taiwan), Informatics Business Institute – Dharmajaya (Indonesia), and Universiti Malaysia Kelantan. Over the next three years, more than 13,000 students will undergo a type of training or program through UKM-CESMED and its affiliated partners. The program will establish a strong pipeline to turn students into skilled graduated, and skilled graduated into competent professionals.