Archives for category: Studies

First off, Happy New Year to all. I haven’t been updating for a long long while partially because I was very caught up with my work and dedications.

It’s the time of the year when I look back at 2010 and noted out some of the things which clearly  made my year (either great or miserable).

1. Someone broke into by car and stole the car battery

I still have no idea how someone could open up a locked car hood and took out the battery.


2. Became an avid photographer covering certain events and functions (such as), and getting some good shots off people as well.

1. CSSUPM Annual Dinner 2010.

Had a great time with great retro dressing models.

2. Now I See Spiritual Revival Concert 2010.

I wasn’t an official photographer for the event but since anyone can basically just go up front to take photos, I just went ahead. Anyway. Shot for 2 concerts, first one was in New Era College Kajang, and the second at a University in Sunway.

3. Staged photoshoots.

Managed to ask Joanne & Leo, Fang Wen and Shirley & Ezone to model for me. I still feel that the photos are lacking a lot though. Need more practice.

4. Desmine and Melissa’s Wedding

My first ever Wedding photoshoot. And I didn’t do quite well. Hmmm. But they are a loving couple. Apparently starting a family soon ^^.

5. UPM Dogathon 2010

Once again, not an official photographer. But I reckon I got some great shots that day.

6. CSSUPM Annual Camp 2010

Camp 248

I realized I didn’t blog about this since I was on a break. Regardless I had a fun, great and emotional time at Port Dickson.

7. Chinese Opera Charity Concert

Actresses and Daniel

This was a charity event so I wasn’t paid for it (nor I was for most of the events). But still enjoy taking photos of the actors and mostly actresses on stage. Also didn’t blog about this but most of the photos can be found on my Facebook.

8. Alex and KaeChing’s Wedding.

Kae Ching and Alex

Was a guest but that didn’t keep Esme (my camera) away. They finally tie the knot after… 7-8 years?? And they will surely have many more years to look forward to.

9. CSSUPM Freshies Day.

Dance 1

Welcoming the lovely juniors to the family away from home.

10. English Language Dinner

Group 24

Was called to shoot this event. More photos on Facebook. Though I think I was paid for this. Since the dinner was free for me ^^.

11. Some random shots of people around me

Chapel Milo Party 13

Nova might kill me for this. But its a lovely very descriptive shot.

12. Macro photography.Bee 1Bee

Loving the Tamron 90mm lens I have right now.

3. Met Karen Kong during Alex and KaeChing’s wedding.

I’m a fan for hers though not so recently. But I do like some of her songs. Did managed to get a couple of photos of her.

Karen Kong on stage 3

4. Won a few tickets online for miscellaneous events.

Ticket 1

Tickets to Moto GP UK from Air Asia, which I didn’t go because it was in the UK. And they gave me the tickets 1 week before the event.


Ticket 7

NTV7 Star Live Concert 2010 tickets from which I gave to Sally.


I did won tickets to Alice in Wonderland special screening though… I misplace the photo but I gave the tickets to TJF and Wei Keat. That particular screening was pretty harsh on my wallet though cause even though I got the tickets for free… I was fined for speeding on my way back from the cinema TT.

5. Got my photo published in a magazine.

I remember I intended to get a photo out in a magazine during my 2010 resolutions which I made in 2009. And in November 2010, I got my first photo out in the Digital SLR Magazine Malaysia October 2010 issue. I submitted the photo in September and I was very disappointed when it didn’t come out in the September issue but was really shocked when I saw it in the October issue. Won a memory card as well. Hurray for me.

6. Took care of a CAT for a whole month.

Smokey 5

Smokey isn’t mine. She’s Sandy’s cat but Sandy is having her break so I offer to take care of her. And she is one timid cat. Enjoy my time scaring her all over the place. She’s going back to Sandy soon though. I might miss her. But she’s better off with Sandy since I found out that I can be quite a bully Smile with tongue out

7. Lost some weight.

I have no proof of this yet though since I haven’t weight myself for sometime. But since most of my jeans are a lot looser than they was, I guess I should have lost a few kgs. But definitely didn’t reach my target of 65kg. Perhaps somewhere within 70kg to 75kg. I’ll keep trying the coming year.

8. Cried my eyes out during the CSSUPM Annual Camp.

Camp 186 (captioned)

I did mention that it was emotional but you would never guess how emotional it was for me. Perhaps only the few who sat beside me knew what had happened. But it got me to change some parts of me though I guess. Some parts of the evil me still remain but I’ll slowly take care of that.

9. Travelled all over Malaysia.

I went to Malacca, Johor, Penang, Kedah, Pangkor, Perak and also went back Labuan for a few weeks. Didn’t managed to go outside Malaysia though like in 2009 when I went Taiwan. But AirAsia is already flying to South Korea and also New Zealand next year. These destinations are really tempting me. Maybe I will really fly to this places in 2011.


Went to AIMST university in Kedah when my sister enrolled there.


Monkey 9

Got attacked by monkeys and leeches during my trip to Pangkor. It was funny though.



Went to Malacca with CharYong to meet up with FangWen for her photoshoot.


10. And finally… Made a decision to get my doctorate by 2013.

I have to graduate by then. Seriously I have to!!! Working hard on it now. Progress this year had been better than the past years but its still a long way to go and I still can’t see the end of the road. But I’ll keep walking… And I have to go on a faster pace as well. Lets do it!!!


I hope your 2010 was as eventful as mine ^^



I’ve been attending this seminar called IDERN 2010 for the past few days. It’s the short form for International Doctoral Educational Research Network, bringing supervisors and postgraduate students from all over the globe to discuss about postgraduate studies.

In a lot of ways, I would have like it more if I had attended this before I started my PhD 2 years ago because it would have given me a clearer picture over how and what studying PhD would be like.

I like to quote one of the speakers who said

PhD- you are responsible for the independent research in the field while being properly supervised.

This means that you are responsible for everything you do from the first step onwards, not your supervisor. This particular responsibility I had experienced it first hand, be it being efficient to carry out my study or be it missing deadlines due to personal problems, everything was my responsibility, and I can’t say that it’s not my fault because everything that happen since that day 2 years ago is under my care.

Another particular thing which I just had to quote was this

In the beginning, you would know nothing, and your supervisor will know everything. After 3 years, you will know almost everything and your supervisor, almost nothing

Think about it.

Well anyway, I’ve learnt loads from the seminars held, from dealing with your supervisors to defending the viva. I won’t be sharing any here because it will take a lot of writing space.

Perhaps the only thing I would write about is this.

Postgraduate study is like your undergraduate study, multiplied ten-folds, add-in a few folds of stress and problems, subtracting all the help you may have gotten in your undergraduate years and you’ll find time as a fraction of what it used to be.

So be prepared, my dear juniors who are about to journey down this road. But do remember one thing though, please do have a life while studying because sometimes a pinch of fun allows for more efficient work.

Have fun studying 🙂

Here’s some other things from the seminar that I would like to share: (Sources are in brackets)

The secret life of the PhD student

You’re sitting at your desk ready to start writing; it’s 9.30 a.m. You think, “I’ll just check my emails for 10 minutes and then I’ll get started on my literature review.” You open up your email and find there’s one from your supervisor asking if your draft is ready. You quickly send it to the trash and check the next one. It’s from an honours student in your department saying they can’t find a particular reference and since it’s your field do you know where to find it. You think, “It’ll only take a few minutes, I’ll just do a quick check.” So you log onto to the library electronic journals. Eventually, with a sense of great satisfaction, it’s found and emailed off to the grateful honours student. It’s 10.15 a.m. “Well,” you think, “I may as well just get the rest of these emails cleared”; glassware not cleaned in lab yesterday – send back saying it wasn’t me; astronomical society bash tonight – send back saying sorry, can’t come; interesting reference from co-supervisor –send back saying thanks, and go look up reference – feel very satisfied when found, printed, stapled and put in pile with 40 other articles. It is now 11.00 a.m. “Well, it’s been a busy morning, surely it’s time for a cup of coffee.” You meet a few friends in the coffee room and chat about the latest techniques for grafting boils to blue tongued sleepy lizards. It’s 11.30 a.m. As it’s only an hour until lunch you think there’s not much point in trying to start the lit review now, so you organise some references and put them into Endnote. It’s 12.30 p.m. and, with a sigh of relief, you head off for lunch. At 1.30 p.m. you come back and now feel a little tired, so think ‘I’ll just do something a bit easy until I feel more motivated.’ It’s 2.30 p.m. and another PhD student knocks on the door and asks for help with calibrating her super-sensitive bio-liquid. You are really good at this so you help and, after all, she’s helped you with Endnote in the past. After this you rush back into your office. It’s 4.30 p.m. You’re late, so you shut down your computer, grab your bag and rush out.
Your supervisor walks past and asks you how your day was. You say, “Great – very busy, did a lot”, but you have to rush now because you’re late for a meeting of the Faculty Higher Degrees Completion Committee and you are its representative!

                                                                   (Kearns et al., 2008)

Do inform me if it’s inappropriate to post this here and I’ll take it down.

What is written in the secret lives of a PhD student is really quite true 🙂

And the second one is a comic by Jorge Cham which is also quite true.


Lol. Have an idea what’s postgraduate studies is like yet?



In case you hadn’t noticed: I FAILED IN SKETCHING.


Anyway. I’m glad to say that I really PWN’d my Health Statistic paper. First indications of test 1 and test 2 showed that I would have been unable to ‘ace’ this subject this time around but I totally pwn’d it in the finals and scored there big time. Very happy with my results

Last Thursday till Saturday, there was a postgraduate studies fair in the Grand Hall of UPM. Graduate Students Club was asked to help out in setting up the booth and maintaining it throughout the whole 3 days. The tradition was that our faculty are title holders for best booth for 3 years running and I was a bit worried that the title will fall out of the hands of the current batch of Exco.

However surprisingly, we won. I’m really thankful for all those who helped out in the booth. Especially to my secretary who did quite a lot since I was out with a cold and also had to plan for a secondary booth during the Biomedical Symposium at Faculty of Medicine and Health Science. It has been a hectic few days but I guess the hard work paid off.

I’m still wondering though how we’d managed to win as I really could see other booths that are on par, if not nicer than ours.

Anyway, here are some photos of the booth


PG Fair 1

PG Fair 2

PG Fair 3

PG Fair 4

PG Fair 5

Lets hope that we can retain the same achievement next year 🙂

Here are some of the photos from the secondary booth for the Biomedical Symposium.

PG Fair 6

PG Fair 7

PG Fair 8

PG Fair 9

PG Fair 10

PG Fair 11

I’m really grateful for Phoebe [girl in white in the above photo] who helped me out when I was facing the prospect of guarding the booth on my own for 4 hours [being sick and all]. Thank you very much.

And now, after all this, I can finally focus on other things which I really have to get done.

And gosh, I’m still not completely well 😦

Ever since starting my post-graduate studies here, I’ve been doing a lot of things. Things that a post-graduate student will have to do and things I have never thought one would have to do till I done it.

Here’s a list of things I’ve done before:

1. Do my project work.

2. After (1), find out why my project work is not being done

3. After (2), try to change project titles or incorporate new things into the project to make it more interesting.

4. After (3), still found out that the progress is not there.

5. After (4), realize that I may be not working hard enough.

6. After (5), wonder why I’m still around 😛

7. Supervise final year project students with their project work.

8. After (7), become ‘one-of-the-person-who-stay-late-supervising-other-junior-students’

9. After (7), become ‘one-of-the-person-to-ask-if-you-want-to-use-anything-in-the-lab’

10. After (7), being the ‘one-who-get-ffk-by-his-junior-everytime most-of-the-time-he-want-to-teach-him-DNA-extraction’

11. Become a lab demonstrator for undergraduates during lab sessions.

12. After (11), helped correct lab reports.

13. After (12), helped correct some test papers.

14. Become a lab demonstrator for undergraduates for their pre-industrial training.

15. Become ‘the-person-to-see’ by the sales person who comes to the lab

16. Become ‘the-person-to-order-from’ by my other lab mates.

17. Become ‘the-person-who settles-the-orders-and-the-paperwork’

18. Writes up proposal for my supervisor to apply for new grants so we can have $$ to carry on our research project.

19. Edit up proposals from other supervisors but ‘co-supervised’ by my supervisor to apply for new grants.

20. Become ‘one-of-the-person-who-tries-to-tally-up-accounts-to-find-out-how-much-is-left’

21. After (20), find out why accounts are not tally.

22. After (21), tally out accounts

23. Become ‘the-person-to-cancel-wrong-orders-placed-by-other-more-senior-but-less-‘experienced’-laboratory-mates’

24. Typed something into a soft copy form in 30 minutes due to supervisor forgetting to do it.

25. Helped completed a poster for presentation within one week.

26. After (25), struggled through some presentations of the poster to some public people.

27. Helped to maintain lab items and lab reagents.

28. Carry out cleanup of things which other lab mates sometimes don’t clean up.

29. Carry out reorganization of where things are placed in the lab.

30. After (29), try to remember where all the things are placed in the lab.

31. After (30), find out why some things are missing.

32. After (31), report missing items.

And the list goes on… And that’s just things in the lab. That’s not accounting for things outside the lab.