Development & Alumni Relations Office 



HARDSHIP FUND TO SUPPORT STUDENTS FROM MALAYSIAKuala Lumpur skyline at dusk showing world towers, with inset of Dato’  Lim Si Boon

02 March 2021

A Queen’s Engineering graduate well-known in Malaysia for his commitment to education and who received an Honorary Doctorate of Social Science (DSSc) from his alma mater in 2016, has set up a new fund at the University to support Malaysian students.

Dato’ Lim Si Boon, BEng Manufacturing Engineering (1989), is Chairman at the property development company, Bonanza Venture Holdings and a director of Meru Valley Golf Resort - both in Ipoh in Perak, Malaysia - and a former Director of Tenby Schools Group, which he sold in 2016.

To be known as the Dato’ Lim Si Boon Hardship Fund, it aims to support Malaysian students currently studying at Queen’s who are experiencing financial hardship as a direct result of the Covid-19 pandemic. Gifted under the SiWu Trust Fund, which offers scholarships at Tenby Schools in Ipoh, the Hardship Fund recognises those who have made a similar journey as Dato' Lim from Malaysia to Queen's in Northern Ireland. 

Speaking about the new fund Dato’ Lim Si Boon said:

“SiWu Education Trust Fund was established to provide financial assistance to deserving students. We believe scholarship funding is truly a gift that keeps on giving for years to come. 

“We hope this gift will impact Malaysian students, who boldly stepped out of their comfort zone to pursue their dreams during challenging times."

And addressing the students directly, he added: “We hope our little contribution will ease your hardship. Study hard and stay safe.”

Uniting students of different cultures and nationalities, Dato’ Lim Si Boon is also involved in a partnership with Queen’s and Stranmillis College, in the development of an International Postgraduate Certificate in Education.

A former President of the Queen’s University Alumni Association in Malaysia (QUAAM), Dato’ Lim Si Boon has played a key role in building an active community of Queen’s graduates in the country and has, for many years, been an important point of contact for visiting delegations from Queen’s on visits to Kuala Lumpur and other cities and regions in Malaysia.

Welcoming the new Fund, Director of Development and Alumni Relations, Nathalie Trott said:

“Dato’ Lim Si Boon is one of Queen’s notable graduates in Malaysia, a lifelong supporter of the University and a wonderful advocate for educational links between his country and Northern Ireland.

“This latest initiative, coming as it does at a time when we are all having to deal with the huge difficulties of the pandemic, offers additional support to current Malaysian students at the University.  

“Young people have been coming from Malaysia to study at Queen’s since the late 1950s. Dato’ Lim Si Boon is doing so much to ensure that this strong association can continue for many more years to come.”  

To support the Dato’ Lim Si Boon Hardship Fund please contact Viv Harris, Development Manager, Queen’s University Belfast, by Wednesday 10 March 2021. 

Awarded an honorary doctorate from Queen’s five years ago for his philanthropic work in supporting the provision of education to increasing numbers of children in Malaysia, Dato’ Lim Si Boon said at the time: “My Queen’s education equipped me not only with knowledge and skills in engineering, it also nurtured my ability to adapt and learn, and to transfer that learning to make an impact in education.

“It taught me to persevere with an idea and to harness my network to make a positive impression on the community of teachers and students in Malaysia.”

Queen’s has a vibrant Malaysian student community and, outside the UK, Ireland and China, is the country in which most Queen’s graduates are to be found. In 1997 the Malaysian Students’ Society of Northern Ireland (MSSNI) was founded to provide events, social activities and support to Malaysian students during their time at Queen’s.

Renowned for his commitment to education, Dato’ Lim Si Boon is inviting fellow Queen’s Malaysian alumni to join him in supporting the new fund to ensure that the current generation of Malaysian students enjoy the same opportunities as he did and does not suffer undue hardship due to the pandemic.

The fund will provide immediate relief to students experiencing hardships due to the pandemic. A limited number of payments will be available to Malaysian students resident in Belfast and preference will be given to those who can demonstrate tangible financial hardship that is impacting on their studies.

For enquiries about this story, or to submit graduate news items, please contact Gerry Power, Communications Officer, Development and Alumni Relations Office, Queen's University Belfast.

Main image by Pexels from Pixabay 

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