Malaysian Cultural Entrepreneurs Inspire KDU Students At 2nd KDU International Student Entrepreneurship Conference 2016

Guest speakers and audience with the management team of KDU University College. Ola Bola discourse session with Muzaffar Mustapa (from left) and Zan Azlee, facilitated by Joel Tan, a student of KDU University College.
Prof Dr. Robert Bong, Chief Advisor of Malaysia Blue Ocean Strategy Institute giving his keynote address.  
With the aim of broadening students’ worldview for their holistic development, the Student Council of KDU University College and KDU College was proud to organise the 2nd International Student Entrepreneurship Conference (KISEC) 2016 at its Utropolis Glenmarie campus on 24 September 2016 in collaboration with the Student & Alumni Centre (SAC) of KDU.
With the theme for this year “Cultural Entrepreneurship”, the conference was enthusiastically participated by 169 on-campus and off-campus audience, which included government officials. With aims to educate future leaders about the sustainability of cultural entrepreneurship, and to understand how cultural enterprises use beliefs, customs and the arts as a second economy to develop financial stability from cultural activities, KDU brought together a group of distinguished scholars, entrepreneurs and advocators from diverse background.
The impressive line-up of speakers included Prof Dr Robert Bong, Chief Advisor, Malaysia Blue Ocean Strategy Institute; Mr Chiu Keng Guan, Film Director of Ola Bola, The Journey, Great Day and WooHoo!; Mr Zan Azlee, Multimedia Journalist, Documentary Filmmaker and Writer; Mr Muzaffar Mustapa, Social Media Manager, Astro Awani; Asst. Prof Ser Shaw Hong, Vice Chairman, Communication Management Programme, Chulalongkorn University, Thailand; Mr Johan Nasir, Malaysian Association of ASEAN Young Entrepreneurs; Mr Collin Swee and Mr Syed Sadiq Albar, Founder of Projek57 and Ms Jacqueline Fong, Co-Founder of Tanoti Sdn Bhd.
Both guests and participants were warmly welcomed and hosted by Prof Dr Hiew Pang Leang, Vice Chancellor, KDU University College; Assoc Prof Dr Hon Wei Min, Deputy Vice Chancellor – Academic; and Mr Shanker Sathivellu, Deputy Vice Chancellor – Administration.
In his welcoming speech, Prof Dr Hiew reiterated how KDU University College have been focusing on developing entrepreneurial skills among students for the past few years, and now shall take a look at the innovation aspects of this familiar concept. “From the trend of the world, we have seen a lot of enterprises that are not necessarily focus purely on the business aspects of it, but include the aspects of social and cultural. It’s not merely about financial but also about you respond to your own identity, and your contribution to your society and country,” said Hiew.
The keynote address was given by Prof Dr Robert Bong. Having more than 30 years of global experience in the corporate leadership, he expounded how this generation should take heed to the changes in the market and how they should incorporate the Blue Ocean Strategy into their ideas.
The movie Ola Bola was screened at the conference and it was followed by a discourse session with Zan Azlee together with Muzaffar Mustapa. Video interview with Chiu Keng Guan, the director of this movie, was also screened to for participants to understand his perspective of cultural entrepreneurship. He stressed on paying attention to the story line before considering of marketing strategy.
Plenary speakers who spoke at the conference included Asst. Prof Ser Shaw Hong, who emphasised the uniqueness of multi-cultural Malaysia in “Teh Tarik and Malaysianess: Recognising and Preserving Our Cultural Heritage”; Johan Nasir touched on how ASEAN, as the second largest human energy export and developing countries in the world, provided huge opportunities for young entrepreneurs to expand their market and innovate more business ideas.
Besides that, Collin Swee and Syed Sadiq Albar paired up and spoke on “Projek57 A Movement Of Hope”. Sharing their story of how they have incorporated culture into their business, and at the same time improving social and economic well-being of the country, the duo were very much advocates of patriotism, and called for keeping hope for our motherland.
Jacqueline Fong, who was about to embark to Paris’ Malaysian Fashion Week Global Launch at that time with her hand-crafted fabrics product, shared her valuable experiences on how she started her cultural entrepreneurship by embracing culture and tradition in her hometown Sarawak.   
The talks gained well feedback from the audience. “This conference was great and meaningful as I see the good example of retaining our own cultural, finding back our own identity instead of only making money from the business,” said Bernice Chee Wai Yee, a KDU student pursuing her Bachelor of Arts in Business Management and Finance.
Fellow KDU student Chua Yong Tien fund herself enjoying the plenary session. “It was an interesting conference especially the talk by Asst. Prof Ser Shaw Hong, as he was able to relate entrepreneurship and various cultural, religion and beliefs in Malaysia,” she commented.
Ahmad Aiman Syafwan from the German-Malaysian Institute added, “The topic is relatable and interesting as this is able to help the young graduate to create and innovate their new business related to culture.”
KISEC 2016 partnered with Malaysian National Commission for UNESCO, Malaysia Tourism Promotion Board and Malaysian Association of ASEAN Young Entrepreneurs (MAAYE) as part of incorporating culture with entrepreneurship.