Treat of local food and culture for AAOU delegates

In conjunction with the 25th Annual Conference of the Asian Association of Open Universities (AAOU), Wawasan Open University presented the over 250 delegates with Malaysian hospitality, food and entertainment.

Delegates help themselves to local food at Homestead.

Delegates help themselves to local food at Homestead.

The fine dining started off with a cocktail reception followed by dinner hosted by WOU Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Wong Tat Meng for vice chancellors, rectors and presidents of the member institutions of AAOU, at the Homestead Building on September 27th

It was attended by some 60 people; among the guests were Sir John Daniel of COL, Prof Tian Belawati of Universitas Terbuka (Indonesia), Tan Sri Dr Anuwar Ali of OUM, and Prof Insung Jung of International Christian University, Tokyo.

Representatives from WOU management included Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic) Dato’ Prof Ho Sinn Chye and wife Datin Mei, Deputy Vice Chancellor (Operations) Dr Seah Soo Aun, Assistant Vice Chancellor (Academic Support) Prof Mohandas Menon, QA Manager Dr Andy Liew, Registrar Yeong Sik Kheong, and Penang Regional Office director K. Manoharan.  

Performance in front of the Homestead building.

Performance in front of the Homestead building.

The front surroundings of the Homestead was turned a hawker’s food delight for the enjoyment of all the AAOU delegates at the ‘Penang Street Party’ on September 28th. The delegates and staff of WOU were treated to such food as satay, pasembor, assam laksa, char koay teow, fried oyster, nasi lemak and mee goreng, and desserts/drinks like soya bean juice, tau fu fa, ais kacang, and nutmeg juice.

Courtesy of the Penang Global Tourism, the delegates got a taste of the diverse cultures with traditional Malay, Chinese and Indian dance performances. It was a real treat for the foreign delegates who watched the lion and dragon dances, and heard the delightful sounds of the Chinese drums.

Vice Chancellor Prof Wong Tat Meng (in green batik) toasts the participants.

Vice Chancellor Prof Wong Tat Meng (in green batik) toasts the participants.

The eight-course fusion dinner at The Gurney Hotel on September 29th was a double celebration of both WOU’s fifth anniversary for the staff and a feast for the delegates.

Among the over 300 who attended were Wawasan Education Foundation Chairman Dato’ Seri Stephen Yeap and Datin Sri Irene, Minister Fazal Karim from Trinidad and Tobago, WEF director Loo Choo Teng and wife Peggy.

The university’s new corporate entity, a five-minute video featuring the unique learning facilities and services of WOU, plus the key founding leaders and members of the International Advisory Board, and testimonials from WOU students, was launched at the anniversary dinner.

The entertainment for the night was music and songs from the Penang Philharmonic Orchestra (PPO) led by maestro Woon Wen Kin; the chairperson of PPO is Datin Seri Irene.

In his speech at the dinner, Prof Wong remarked that they had promised delegates a gastronomically satisfying workout and he hoped WOU had achieved this objective, to which delegates gave a rousing applause of agreement.

An array of local food at the dinner held at the main campus.

An array of local food at the dinner held at the main campus.

On the last night, the remaining delegates and WOU staff enjoyed a farewell dinner-cum-happy hour at the campus beachfront, which ended literally with a bang as fireworks lit the sky.