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Aug 2017

To Promote a Vibrant Student Life, You Must Have Compassion

A vibrant campus life can motivate students and enrich their learning journey. Zuleha Harun Rashid, Head of Student Services at London School of Business & Finance (LSBF) in Singapore, speaks to Julailah Wahid on the ways to cultivate an engaging environment for students.

“It is compassion, the most gracious of virtues, which moves the world.”

For Zuleha Harun Rashid, Head of Student Services at LSBF in Singapore, this adage could not ring truer.

Her compassion and vigour in developing today’s youths are exemplified in the Student Services’ motto: “It’s our passion to serve”. 

In 2015, Zuleha formed the Student Council to inject fun and camaraderie amongst the student community. The Student Council, a body of student leaders who actively assist and participate in student engagement initiatives, has welcomed increasing members each year.

“The opportunity to groom students into leaders of tomorrow brings me a great sense of fulfilment.  

"On the same note, it is always heartening to see the student leaders supporting their peers in their development and championing the pursuit of excellence,” she said.

Zuleha believes that forging bonds with students can help to create the conditions for students to achieve the highest levels of effort and achievement. Additionally, students can stand to develop the skills, values, and mindset that will enable them to become productive and engaged citizens of society.

“To spur such opportunities, it all boils down to the collective action of the school’s staff. Sincerity, passion, and the drive to continuously improve must be ingrained in them [staff]. This will enable them to serve students more effectively and find breakthroughs that can enhance student development,” she said. 

Adding Colour to Students’ Campus Life

LSBF in Singapore’s Student Services actively engages students throughout their education journey. Last year alone, there were 52 student engagement activities, including field trips, workshops, talks, and festive celebrations.  

Advocating the school’s core values of compassion and care, Zuleha also places great emphasis on giving back to the society. In the past year, she has organised several charitable activities, such as a fundraising drive for SPD and a visit to Jamiyah Children’s Home during Ramadan.

Student Council members selling cupcakes to raise funds for SPD

“What I love most is how we relentlessly pursue and demonstrate compassion. Such values are often instilled beyond the classroom, so it is important that we get our students involved in community outreach events. Besides making a difference in the lives of others, this will also enable students to gain new perspectives and a sense of belonging to the community,” she said.

New students participating in orientation programme last month

Every year, Zuleha leads the orientation programmes to help new students assimilate better into the school. The orientation also allows students to find out more about the academic support, resources, and variety of student clubs available in school.

Bringing Out the Best in Individuals

One of the unique aspects about Zuleha’s student engagement strategy is that she empowers students to organise and host events for their peers. These events range from dance lessons to skills development workshops.

Zuleha hopes that through such student-led initiatives, students can demonstrate their capabilities and develop a sense of responsibility.

She also makes it a point to sign students up for competitions to showcase their talents and represent the school. Last year, LSBF in Singapore students clinched the top prize in the School Green Awards’ Recycling Bin Design Competition, organised by Singapore Environment Council. Zuleha considers the award a significant milestone not just for the school but also its students. It serves as an “inspiring message to all students that they can achieve great things if they seize opportunities and aim high enough”.

Indeed, the campus experience can define a student’s journey, which is why Zuleha urges schools to constantly engage its students in meaningful activities that can mould their personal and academic identity. “Students are, after all, the school’s ambassadors and driving force,” she concluded.

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