Three sportswomen have done their country, Sunway College and Sunway University proud, when they returned from the 26th SEA Games in Palembang, Indonesia with a haul of medals. Katrina Ann Abdul Hadi won five gold medals all in the Synchronised Swimming events, Jacqueline Jenelee Sijore bagged gold in the women’s doubles Bowling event and bronze in the women’s team bowling event and Sin Li Jane won silver in the women’s individual Bowling event and a bronze in the women’s team event.
In recognition of their achievements, the Jeffrey Cheah Foundation has awarded full Sunway Talent Scholarships in the area of Sport to all three athletes. For Jacqueline and Katrina, this means an upgrade to their existing Sunway Talent Scholarship – Sports, from 50% to a full scholarship. Furthermore if Katrina (currently studying at Sunway College) decides to continue her studies at Sunway University, she will be offered a continuation of her scholarship into her university studies.
Katrina Ann Abdul Hadi, is 19 years old and is a Canadian International Matriculation (CIMP) student at Sunway College. Katrina completed her SPM at the Bukit Jalil Sports School and represented Malaysia at the Commonwealth Games 2010 where she came in fourth and fifth placing in the solo event, while at the Asian Games in the same year she came in sixth in her duet event. Despite her hectic training schedule as a swimmer, Katrina is an exemplary student having scored four A’s in her CIMP examinations.
For Katrina, studies have to be planned with her training schedule which always includes discussions with her coach, Long Yan from China. “A lot of planning is done before my exams including the CIMP exams,” she quips. “The CIMP is quite flexible and have allowed me to balance my studies well with training.”
“As a national synchronised swimmer, I have to discipline myself to spend time studying as well. It is not easy, but not impossible. My parents always encourage me a lot.” Katrina’s mother is proud Sunway CIMP lecturer, Kimberly Ann Gagnon.
A delighted Katrina could hardly contain her excitement after helping Malaysia to make a spectacular medal tally. “I came with only a three-gold target in mind and I’ve won five – that’s a real bonus. Right now my priority is to try and qualify for the London Olympics next year but it won’t be easy. My personal target is the 2016 Olympics and, hopefully, I’ll continue swimming until then,” says Katrina.
Jacqueline Jenelee Sijore, is also 19 years old and is currently studying in the American Degree Transfer Program (ADTP) at Sunway University. Jacqueline’s gold medal with partner Zandra Aziela Ibrahim Hakimi has added to her successful year, in September she was crowned World Champion at the Women’s World Bowling Cham¬pionships 2011 in Hong Kong.
Jacqueline was unable to receive the scholarship certificate personally as she was away in South Africa competing for Malaysia in the World Cup Bowling Championships. She said by email, “I will still be myself and hope for more winnings in the future. Although people turn their eyes on me everywhere I go, I always believe that it is hard work and sacrifices that have helped me reach this level of performance. Talent, without the sweat, is not enough!”
Sin Li Jane, 19, is a fellow classmate of Jacqueline’s in the ADTP at Sunway University. On her SEA Games debut she narrowly missed out of the Gold medal by virtue of only two pins. However gaining the Silver Medal in the women’s individual event was satisfying after she clawed back an 83 point gap during the competition. She and Jacqueline also combined to win a bronze in the women’s team event.
Both Jacqueline and Li Jane attribute part of their sporting achievement to the flexibility of the ADTP which allowed them to manage their commitment to studies with their training and competition schedules both locally and overseas.
The scholarships were provided by the Jeffrey Cheah Foundation which owns and governs Sunway Education Group institutions.