Nur Ietrah Shahila binti Sahrum is not unfamiliar with setbacks. Eight years ago, she lost her mother. Last year, she lost another close relative – the uncle who had sheltered and provided for her during her formative years.
Ietrah is the second of three siblings. The eldest recently graduated college, whilst the youngest just started Form Six. Despite her young age, Ietrah has always been determined not to burden their caregivers. Since completing secondary school, Ietrah has taken up part time jobs, not only for her own pocket money, but also to gain experience for her to start a business someday.
The turning point to bigger dreams
Ietrah is a 2019 recipient of the PIDM Undergraduate Scholarship Programme, currently studying as an accounting undergraduate at Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) Puncak Alam. Prior to her degree course, she had completed her Diploma in Accounting at UiTM Segamat.
Having realised how her interest in accounting could take her to new heights, Ietrah has been a consummate learner not only about accountancy, but also about other topics such as cost management, auditing, and even organisational behaviour.
“With all this knowledge, I feel that it would not only help keep a company’s books in order, but also help me with assessing if people are the right fit for an organisation. This is also an important element for a business’ success,” shared Ietrah.
When she is not kept busy with her classes and assignments, Ietrah buries herself in business books. When she can, Ietrah takes time to unwind and enjoy her walks around her campus.
Ietrah acknowledges that the support from PIDM has made it possible for her to pursue her studies. With the scholarship, Ietrah said she no longer had to worry about paying for her tuition fees and all other expenses for her undergraduate studies.
“I am especially grateful to have my mentor, Shwu Ying (Siew Shwu Ying is a portfolio manager at PIDM’s Resolution and Risk Assessment Division). She has been with me every step of the way, providing guidance in my studies and was a pillar of support when my uncle passed away,” said Ietrah.
“I nearly came this close to giving up but the support I received helped me to focus on getting a degree so I can build a better life for my family.”
For aspiring PIDM scholarship recipients, Ietrah said that the first step to success is having the courage to take the plunge.
”To be honest, I had a lot of worries during the time when I applied for the scholarship. I felt that my results weren’t good enough for it. But you know what? If you never try, you never know,” said Ietrah.
Ietrah said being selected for the PIDM scholarship meant that she was now one step closer to realising her dreams.
“So keep on going! Know your worth and believe in yourself because even as we struggle in life, there are many things that we can learn and achieve from it.”
As for her dreams, Ietrah hopes to one day be able to open her own chain of on-campus printing service shops.
“I know how much every single sen counts to students like me so I want to help other students save money so they can focus on their studies in university,” she said.