The Freezailah Forest Sustainability Award recognizes outstanding students in the field of forestry. (Third from left) 2018 Award recipient, Hoo Pui Kiat, is presented a cash prize of RM2,000 by (second from left) Universiti Malaysia Sabah Vice Chancellor, Professor Dato’ Dr. D Kamaruddin D Mudin; and witnessed by Dean of Faculty of Science and Natural Resources, Professor Dr Baba Musta and MTCC CEO, Mr Yong Teng Koon.


Kota Kinabalu, 26 November 2018– In an effort to promote academic excellence and inculcate the love for forests amongst university students, the Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) has been collaborating with the Faculty of Science and Natural Resources, Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) in jointly determining the worthy recipient oftheFreezailah Forest Sustainability Award since 2016


“The Freezailah Forest Sustainability Award, named after MTCC’s founder Chairman Dato’ Dr Freezailah Che Yeom, aims to recognise the achievement of outstanding students and to spur other students to pursue academic excellence in their respective fields of study.  This award is given to the graduating student with the best academic achievement and a final year project thesis that meets the prescribed quality and scope of study,” explained MTCC CEO, Mr. Yong Teng Koon


Student Hoo Pui Kiat with a thesis entitled “Comparison of Tree Diversity & Species Composition Across a Multi-Land Use and Tree Diversity-Carbon Relationship in GOM-UNDP-GEF Project, Luasong, Sabah” was judged the winner for the Freezailah Forest Sustainability Award for 2018.  Hoo’s research indicated that human modified land use causes negative impacts to the forest and better land use management is crucial to avoid such irreversible impacts on tree diversity, changes in species composition and carbon stock.  He received RM2,000 in cash and a Certificate of Achievement from MTCC.


“I am very happy to be awarded the Freezailah Forest Sustainability Award.  It is a great honour and will definitely motivate me and strengthen my resolve to do my part to contribute and promote forest sustainability in Malaysia. I hope all Malaysians will do likewise as forests are so important and crucial to our lives and well-being,” said Hoo after receiving his award at the 20thUMS Convocation.


“The future of sustainability lies in the hands of our future generations.  In this regard, we must do our part in preparing and engaging our next generation so that they will be able to see and embrace our vision for full implementation of sustainable forest management in Malaysia.   Engaging them at the university level while they are young and eager to learn, promoting academic excellence and raising awareness of their shared responsibility in this endeavour is definitely a significant step in the right direction,” Yong concluded.