Student who trekked two hours for stable Internet connection accepted into university

SIBU: The 21-year-old student from Pakan who trekked two hours uphill for better network reception to attend an online university interview has successfully made it into Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris (UPSI).

WIth that, Frank Steward Panting Sa is now a step closer in achieving his dream of becoming a teacher.

His enrollment was confirmed by UPSI vice-chancellor Prof Datuk Dr Md Amin Md Taff, who said Frank is now officially a student of the university.

In a Facebook post, Md Amin commended Frank for his willingness to trek up Bukit Kelingkang for better Internet speed, as well as his father Sa Ujom for building the makeshift hut where Frank sat to attend the interview.

On Feb 17, it was reported that Frank trekked up to Bukit Kelingkang to get sufficient bandwidth to attend his university interviews online.

In a Facebook video, Frank was seen sitting on a bemban mat in a makeshift hut built by his father.

He said although their longhouse Rumah Suing in Teberu, Ulu Kemalih, was equipped with the WiFi Sarawak Linking Urban, Rural and Nation (Saluran) network, the bandwidth could not support requirements for online interviews.

Frank had attended a similar interview for a Moral subject at the same spot the previous week.

After news of Frank’s sacrifice went viral, the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) was tasked to look into improving Internet connectivity here.

Communications and Multimedia Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa said the Internet connection was provided by Sarawak Rural Broadband Network (SRBN) and the matter would be dealt with.

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