Tuesday, January 31, 2012

It's Surf Time!!

As I’m sure everyone are in their own little offices/universities dreaming of the upcoming four day weekend (yahoo!!), we at GRADUAN figured we’d try to liven up your day (or depending on how you look at it, add to your torment) by putting in your heads images of warm sunny beaches, turquoise blue waters and all-you-can-eat seafood buffets as we bring you “The Top 3 Beaches in Malaysia!”

1.      Perhentian Island, Terengganu
Located of the coast of Terengganu, Perhentian Island boasts two main islands; Perhentian Besar ("Big Perhentian") and Perhentian Kecil ("Small Perhentian"). 
The name "perhentian" means "stopping point" in Malay, referring to their longstanding role as a waypoint for traders between Bangkok and Malaysia.

Both islands are fringed by white sandy beaches, and the reefs and crystalline water are host to a wide variety of coral, sea-turtles, jellyfish, small sharks and reef-fish. So, feel free to grab you scuba gear and prepare for a time of jaw-dropping sights!!

Lonely Planet has ranked Pulau Perhentian's beach as the 5th "Best Beach to Swing a Hammock" in its 1000 Ultimate Experiences for 2010. It says, "The palm-fringed beaches of the Perhentian Islands, covered in tropical rainforest, are about as natural as they come: calm, hassle-free and with virtually no signs of commercialisation."

Sigh...sounds like paradise to me!

2.      Pulau Sibu Besar, Johor
Calling all scuba and snorkelling enthusiasts! Head on over to Sibu Island because this is the place for you!

This one-resort island has four beaches, each with its own unique character; Sibu Besar Island, Sibu Tengah Island, Sibu Kukus Island and Sibu Hujung Island.

There are a number of small resorts on the island, typically used as a weekend or short vacation. The main leisure activities on the island are water sports such as snorkeling and diving. But, if you’re feeling lazy (like me), the island is perfect for basking in the sun.

And if you have a hankering for a bit of wildlife, visit the island in July when the sea turtles crawl ashore here to lay their eggs.

Fun Fact: This peaceful area was once the site of a Vietnamese refugee camp. 

3.      Tioman Island, Pahang
If there ever was heaven on earth, this place would be it! Ever had the urge to sleep the day away with the sun shining on your face? Then, Tioman Island is the place to be. 

 Huge trees dot the beach, giving a wonderful canopy not only for hammock swingers but also for those going for those high-back benches. Either swinging in a hammock or sitting on one of the benches, the beach is a perfect spot for watching the glorious sunset.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Today in History

Hello readers! How is everyone? I hope everyone is up and rearing to go after the long break? Or are you secretly hoping (like me) for a longer break? If you are, then read on for a little pick-me-up as GRADUAN brings you Today In History!

Thomas Evan Powell, a miner at the Premier Mine in Pretoria, South Africa must have felt AMAZING on 25 January 1905 when he discovered what was to become the World’s Largest Diamond (ever!).

The Cullinan diamond (and no, it has nothing to do with the Cullen’s from Twilight!) at 3,106 carats and weighing in at a whopping 621.35 g is the largest rough gem-quality diamond ever found.

The diamond was sold to the Transvaal provincial government, which later presented the stone to Britain's King Edward VII as a birthday gift. Wow! That sure was some birthday present!

The Cullinan was later cut into 9 large stones and about 100 smaller ones. The largest polished gem cut from the stone is named Cullinan I or the Great Star of Africa, is now mounted in the head of the British Sovereign’s Royal Sceptre.
The Great Star of Africa

While the second largest gem (Cullinan II or the Lesser Star of Africa) sits in the Imperial State Crown. Both of these stones are on display in the Tower of London with Britain's other crown jewels.
The Lesser Star of Africa
The value of the Cullinan diamond is estimated at over £200 million or $400 million!

Queen Elizabeth II with the Royal Sceptre and Imperial State  Crown

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

It's the Lunar New Year!!

Time to bring out the firecrackers and lanterns (not to mentions the heap loads of mandarin oranges!) as we’re about to celebrate 15 days of fun with the Lunar New Year!
Traditionally, each New Year is dedicated to a specific animal in the Chinese Zodiac which is the Dragon, Horse, Monkey, Rat, Boar, Rabbit, Dog, Rooster, Ox, Tiger, Snake, or Ram. It’s believed that each of the animals bestow their characteristics to the people born in their year.
This year we’re entering the Year of the Dragon, and it’s bound to be an exciting and exhilarating year; especially considering the Dragon’s personality!

The Dragon (specifically the Water Dragon) symbolizes such character traits as dominance and ambition. They are single-minded, risk takers and fearless when facing challenges. People are attracted to Dragons’ energy, vitality, enthusiasm and passion; just make sure you don’t get too caught up with their exuberance!

Famous celebrities born in under the Dragon include John Lennon (Imagine!!), Ringo Starr, Al Pacino, Marlene Dietrich and Matt Dillon.

Happy Chinese New Year! And don’t eat too much of those oranges....no matter how tempting!

Friday, January 13, 2012

GRADUAN heads to Melaka!!

Hello readers! We hope you've had an enterprising week! We certainly have!

After having a whale of a time at Multimedia University, Cyberjaya, the GRADUAN team headed off to the University’s Melaka Campus for their Career Fair 2012.

The two-day fair drew quite a crowd as almost 1,000 students and graduates thronged the fair hall.

It was a fun-filled affair and jam-packed with Career Talks (including one by our very own Pn Elia Talib!), lucky draws, and many more.

Certainly the main attraction of the fair was the interaction between the various companies and fresh graduates offering advice, internships and jobs (we hope!).

Some of the exhibitors included; RHB Bank Berhad, Telekom Malaysia Berhad, Great Eastern Life Assurance (Malaysia) Berhad, Kerry Asia Pacific, Maybank Berhad, Teach for Malaysia, A Famosa Resorts, PwC, and whole lot more.

Here are some pictures of the event:

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Movie Review!!

Looking forward to the weekend? Then, why not catch a movie at your local cinema!
And if you can’t decide on which movie to watch, then read on as GRADUAN offers our take on the much awaited movie of last year.

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows

The second instalment of the Sherlock Holmes franchise has bursts onto screens late last year; and this time it’s bigger and better!

If you’re hoping for the suave and debonair Holmes this time a ‘round; I’m afraid you’ll surely be disappointed.

But, never fret!  Sherlock Holmes 2.0 certainly does not let down as the erratic, neurotic and (oftentimes) manic Detective that we love.

Reprising his role as the beloved Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s character, Robert Downey Jr embraces his character’s persona and gives it a twist that only Downey can pull off.

What would Sherlock Holmes be without his loyal sidekick Dr Watson?! The chemistry between Downey and Jude Law (Watson), as well as their witty banter, definitely gives the movie more ‘flavour’.

The exasperated Dr Watson puts up with Holmes’ suicidal-like behaviour with aplomb and often proves to be the voice of reason for Holmes (albeit joining in on several of Holmes’ escapades!).

The cinematography and music certainly bears mention as it was a feast for the senses. 

Till next time!!

Friday, January 6, 2012

MMU Career Fair 2012!

Hello readers! How has your first week of the New Year been? Fun, we hope!

Team GRADUAN certainly started off the year great as we headed to Multimedia University, Cyberjaya for the recent MMU Career Fair 2012!

We had a blast meeting and talking to all the eager young students and graduates there. Even after almost 18 years in the business, it always surprises us to see such passion and eagerness in people so young!

This year’s event was bigger and better with a whole list of participating companies taking part in the event and made it such a success.

Some of these companies included; Maybank, DHL, Walton International, Great Eastern Life Assurance (Malaysia) Berhad, Accenture Malaysia, IBM Malaysia Sdn Bhd, PwC, Accenture, Shell Malaysia, GRADUAN (of course!) and many more!

Here are some pictures of the event:

Till next time MMU-ians!!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Hello 2012 :)

For most of us, the start of a new year means creating a new set of goals to achieve and re-assessing what has been achieved. In other words - setting a brand new set of new years resolution. 

Setting a goal (or several goals) doesn't necessarily mean you need to achieve it within the 1 year time frame. I know it defeats the purpose but the way I see it, as long as you've made your move towards it and you keep making that move than you're already a winner. Say for example your goal in 2011 was to quit smoking and come 2012 you still have a cigarette pack in your pocket. Before you feel like an absolute failure and bow down to the Gods of tobacco, ask yourself this - has your cigarette intake decreased compared to 2010? If it has, than bravo! Give yourself a round of applause and keep it going. Victory only comes after succeeding in trials :)

For those of you who have yet to set any resolution for 2012, here are some ideas to get you started:

Top 10 New Years resolutions for 2012

1. Lose weight
2. Getting organized
3. Spend less, save more
4. Enjoy life to the fullest
5. Staying fit and healthy
6. Learn something exciting
7. Quit smoking
8. Helping others in their dreams
9. Fall in love
10. Spend more time with family