Four out of five (79 percent) Malaysian students would choose to pursue a career that allows them to make a positive contribution in solving pressing global issues, a new study by Cambridge Assessment International Education (CAIE) revealed.
The study stated that more than three quarters (77 percent) of students said they will consider a potential employer’s attitude towards their most important global issue, The Malaysian Reserve reports.
“Malaysian students are motivated to make a difference with 94 percent saying they will take some form of individual action to tackle their top issue of concern.
“These include sharing information with family and friends, making changes to their own lifestyle and encouraging others to make lifestyle changes,” it said.
Additionally, the study noted that 98 percent of Malaysian students felt it is important to learn about global issues, although they often don’t learn about it in school.
This had pushed students to learn information about global issues through trusted organisations and charities.
Two-thirds (68 percent) of the students also said they believe major issues like climate change and pollution will be worse by 2030.
Meanwhile, over a quarter (26 percent) of Malaysian students identified climate change as the biggest issue faced by the world today, which aligns with sentiments of students around the globe.
The study said that pollution, which includes plastic waste, came second in the poll, with 19% of Malaysian students choosing this.
Regional director for South-East Asia and Pacific Ben Schmidt said the results do not come as a surprise for students are suffering the effects of global issues such as climate change and pollution.
“In fact, plastic waste floating freely in rivers and frequent occurrence of flash floods are common sights now in many Malaysian cities.
“This is why it is important for our next generation to be armed with the necessary tools and knowledge to combat these issues,” he said.
Schmidt added that the results in Malaysia showed that students are aware of their surroundings and view climate change as a big challenge for the world today.
“We are encouraged by this, because as educators, we hope to instil the right skillsets that enable them to effectively address these issues, which comes hand-in-hand when pursuing knowledge,” he said.
The study involved over 11,000 students around the world aged 13 to 19 who took part in CAIE’s firstever Global Perspectives survey.
During the survey, students shared their views on global issues, how they learned about them, and how their awareness of these issues might impact their future career choices. Cambridge Global Perspectives is a unique and stimulating programme that provides an opportunity for students aged 5 to 19 to think and learn more about the topics and global issues they care about.
It focuses on enabling students to develop life-long skills like critical thinking, research, collaboration and evaluation.