Jobs in Malaysia, for a foreign student!

Basically, as an international student, Malaysia isn’t a good choice for doing part-time/full-time jobs before their graduation. This statement could raise questions among readers. I will explain why, but before that, I want to talk about something relevant.

Malaysia is a place with cultural diversity and immense natural beauties combined with a rich heritage, as a student it is a better study destination but students who think they will manage their tuition fees and other expenses by working here as a part-timer then it would be totally wrong and unwise decision unless student has a family back up in Malaysia who could provide him with a job with a handsome salary. Students who finish their graduation in Malaysia or come here for a Master degree or above education then it’s easy to find a suitable job which could let them finance their own expenses.

Now I will explain why international students should avoid part-time jobs before graduation. Alright, this topic I’m writing totally based on my experiences, I don’t know whether you will agree with that or not. But if you disagree then please let me know your opinion, maybe it will enlighten my knowledge about this topic and help others who want to study in Malaysia as well as want to do part-time works.

  1. Immigration Malaysia:
    Education Malaysia Global Service (EMGS) which is a part of Malaysian Immigration but they only operate the student applications and the related fields.
    According to their website, Students are allowed to work part-time for a maximum of 20 hours per week only during semester breaks or holidays of more than 7 days in Restaurants, gas station, Mini Markets and Hotels as long as the Student Pass remains valid but they are not permitted to work as a cashier. In addition, in the hotel sector, students are not allowed to work as singers, masseur, musician, GRO (guest relation officer) and other activities deemed to be considered immoral as per the Malaysian law. For this work permit, they need to apply to EMGS with proper documents for approval and once they approved, then the student can do work for part-time.
    Without the approval documents if any international student gets spotted by an immigration officer in any workplace then that officer has full authority to send that student in prison and the university won’t take any responsibilities for the student. One of my classmates faced this type of situation when he was working with an event organizer company without having the work permit document. He was in the lockup for almost 20 days then the Malaysian government sent him back to his country.

  2. Language diversity:
    Most of the universities in Malaysia use English as their official and teaching language even though their first language is Bahasa Melayu. But when it comes to the workplace, the number becomes few who use English in their workplace. So for an international student, it’s really complicated to get mixed with the work environment if his/her coworkers are normally communicating in Bahasa Melayu in office and it’s natural that people communicate in their mother language.

  3. Slowing down study progress:
    It’s a universal truth that if you want to run two tasks in a parallel time then you can’t expect to get the full result from any of them. For an undergrad student the study pressure been higher compared to post graduation or college level students. It is really tough to get a good score in the undergrad level so if any student wants to get involved in any part time job then it’s kind of obvious that the student would get lower grades and lower grades cause lower CGPA.

Everything in this world has pros and cons, even if it comes to working in student life as a part-timer. Students should not make any unusual steps which could cause them some unexpected occurrences. In my opinion, earning money in undergraduate student life is not a wise decision unless the student has no other options left.

But in recent days there are so many ways to earn money by work as a free-lancer on the internet which requires none physical activities or presence. Students can also learn some official work by doing these which is not offered in odd jobs. They can get a chance to learn about recent technologies and some useful learning which could also assist them in their study progress.
For postgraduate and PhD students it’s normal and easy to get a job because they have a graduation certificate and the basic knowledge about their work field. Even in Malaysia, it is easy to find an official job for foreigners with a good salary.

Good points, @HSalman!

If I can summarize and comment:

  1. Undergrad students should NOT aim to work part-time in Malaysia and finance their studies. Yes, I agree. The hourly wages for typical student gigs (waiter, etc) are not very high. I think it should be around RM 8 (or US$ 2) per hour, isn’t it? It’s just not enough to finance your studies and living expenses.
  2. It is, however, quite possible for postgraduate students get part-time jobs with good wages. For example as a Research Assistant at the university.

You made a good point - thanks to the Internet students can earn money in other ways:

In order to earn money online, a student must have special skills. For example: graphic design, foreign languages, web design, programming, video making and editing, etc.

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