The Swiftest of Introductions
We are a group of future engineers pursuing our degrees at Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS (PETRONAS Institute of Technology), Perak, Malaysia who, at the same time, have a passion for writing and expressing ourselves in ways that stereotypically, engineers wouldn’t.
Each of us is either studying Chemical Engineering, Electrical & Electronic Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Civil & Environmental Engineering, Petroleum Geoscience, Petroleum Engineering, Information Technology, Business Information System, Applied Chemistry, Applied Physics or Computer Engineering.
“Just because we’re studying very ‘technical’ courses, doesn’t mean that we have completely lost our passion for expressing ourselves beautifully, linguistically, poetically, elegantly.”
Firstly, our history…
UTP Writing Group or more well known as UTPWriG was formed in 2011 by Faizatul Akhmar, along with the help of Umair Zulkefli, Fatihah Syalwiah and Rawaida Burhani.
Starting out with a small team of around 20 or so members, UTP Writing Group was a means of spreading their idealogies and ways of thinking. Being passionate Muslims whose dream was (and still is) to influence the people around them and, consequently, change the world, UTPWriG served as a platform for them to express their ideas, belief and , more importantly, their love and passion for their deen.
Despite not having had the most perfect of English, or the most perfect of a system or an organization, this small group or halaqahs (circles of people) persisted , full of determination, hope and courage.
We are what the past has made us. We are what the future will make us. Live now. Right now.
– Tom Hiddleston
Development and Growth
Eventually, UTPWriG expanded their range of actvities to more than just writing. We realised that “the each of us actually possesses skills and potential that can be utilised to help us grow and reach further, farther – and conquer heights we hadn’t even dreamt of.”
Thus we began to conduct programs aimed at self-development and personal growth, honing our potentials, sharpening ourselves not only as individuals with ideas, but also as individuals who are able to deliver and execute on those ideas – all the while increasing our sphere of influence, spreading our idealogies and way of life.
Slowly, yet surely, we continued to make our marks.
We need spirited, energetic and strong young people whose hearts are filled with life, enthusiasm, zeal and dynamism; whose souls are full of ambition, aspiration and vigor and have great goals, rising and aspiring to reach them until they eventually arrive at their destination.
– Hasan al-Banna
Trials and tribulations
Since the end of 2013 to 2015, we had continued to conduct our events and had been successful at them (despite the ups, downs, bumps and humps)! Among our top achievements were:
- Muslim Awareness Seminar (2014)
- Bakti Sosial (BAKSOS)/(Corporate Social Responsibility) with the homeless at KL (2014)
- English Tuition Class @ Seri Iskandar & Tronoh (2014)
- Most Promising Club Award (2014) – even though we weren’t a club yet
- Adapt to UTP Life (2015)
- Exclusive Six Secrets of Successful Students (2015)
- The Grand Writing Carnival (2015)
- Launching of Success Secret Revealed (2016)
Apart from the above, we had our bulletins each semester, along with participation at the regular semester-ly campus events such as Minggu Mesra Kampus (MMK).
All of this, with our small, dedicated super-team of 20 or so people.
However, things had not always been smooth for UTPWriG – the very fact that all of its members had been Malays and at the same time, (self-proclaimed devout) Muslims, had given the impression that we were an ‘undercover’ Islamic association within the campus.
Meanwhile, we were still a ‘Student Interest Group’, not a club. This in itself had served as a huge barrier, limiting us from doing so much more – such as conducting events with the collaboration of external organisations, companies, and welfare foundations.
In order to become a club, we needed to have more than 50 members, and are composed of a mixture of different ethnicities, countries, and faith.
So not only did we have to clear up this unwelcoming ‘undercover-Islamic-organization’ impression, but we also had to attract people of different ethnicities, countries and faith!
As such, began the battle of the reformation…
An idea will keep on living…if faith in it is strong.
– Hasan al-Banna
Crossing the Chasm, the Leap of Faith
Throughout the years, we gained some, we lost some – but it has never stopped or hindered our operations. Whenever blocked, trust your will, find a way! It was only in mid-2016 that our number of members actually boomed. The recruitment of several influential, high-achieving, ambitious individuals has helped us gained so much in such a short time.
As of today, UTPWriG has a total of 95 members, and, as of 21 February 2017, we were finally officiated as an official club at Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS.
The struggle of many years of effort, planning, and persistence! However, this is not the time to rejoice – this is only the beginning of the thunderstorm. Now comes the new challenge of managing all these new talents, planning more extensive programs, workshops, all the while, maintaining our identity.
We may be documented as a ‘writing group’, but that doesn’t stop us as individuals from doing something different such as social-welfare programs, designing workshops, being a part of the church committee, being a part of halaqah, going bowling every week, attending ballet sessions, anything!
The true scenario was, had always been, and will continue to be, this: UTP Writing Group is a group of passionate individuals who wants to do what they aspire to do, what they love to do, what they achieve to do; whether it be writing stories, designing posters, becoming better individuals for the society, reforming the system, or as far-fetched as reaching Paradise.
Here at our blog, we present to you…
our poetry, our stories, our ideas, our beliefs, our idealogies, our memories, our aspirations, our dreams, our way of life, our experiences,