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2014 Elena Cooke Education Fund Open For Application

BBGS Alumni Berhad's Press Release
Underprivileged young people encouraged to pursue quality education

Elena Cooke Education Fund
Applications for the 2014 Elena Cooke Education Fund are now open to Malaysians below 23 years old who have obtained at least 3As in the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM).

The Fund, set up in honour of the late Miss Elena Cooke, the longest serving headmistress of the Bukit Bintang Girls’ School (BBGS), aims to help underprivileged young people, whether they live with their families or were raised in children’s homes and orphanages, to pursue quality education after SPM in local colleges or universities.

“What’s different about this Fund is that we welcome financially needy students who have perhaps fewer As in their SPM results than top scorers, but who show a good track record in their school co-curricular activities and who are serious about education beyond Form 5, as the means to break out of the cycle of poverty,” says Miss Moey Yoke Lai, a Founding Director of BBGS Alumni Berhad, a company set up to manage the Elena Cooke Education Fund.

To date, three young women are recipients of the Fund. Sabahan Ranimah Oransum has already successfully completed her Early Childhood Education diploma course and is now happily working in a kindergarten in her home state. Deborah Cheong, who was raised in a Children’s Home since Form 2, is presently doing the same course in Early Childhood Education at the Methodist College Kuala Lumpur, while Rebecca George is pursuing a Certified Accounting Technician qualification at Sunway College.

“Our pioneer scholars are progressing well and we are eager to see more young people take hold of this opportunity,” Miss Moey adds.

The Elena Cooke Education Fund typically works closely with local higher educational institutions like the Sunway Education Group (Sunway University and Sunway College KL) and KBU International College so that successful candidates are financially covered throughout their diploma/degree course. The usual scenario is that the college/university covers the tuition fees while the Fund pays for accommodation, book and living expenses.

BBGS was a premier girls’ school in Kuala Lumpur that had been established in 1893 but which had to give way to commercial development in Jalan Bukit Bintang in 2000. Principal from 1958 to 1977, Miss Elena Cooke was the only person who spent 50 years of her life as a student, teacher and headmistress of BBGS. After she retired, she continued to serve the school as a member of the Board of Governors and, subsequently, as the Chairman.

Miss Cooke touched many lives during her service. While she was a fierce and strict disciplinarian, she loved her students. Her care for all in need was apparent and the students learnt from her to care for others.

The Fund indeed is a fitting tribute not only to Miss Cooke, but to all the principals of the BBGS who stayed faithful to the 1893 vision to educate the women in this country, to raise their status in the eyes of society, in order that they might live fuller lives, having earned a worthier place in the world.

Closing date for applications is 31 March 2014. Application forms can be downloaded from