KUALA LUMPUR: The passion to pursue knowledge was the motivation for a retiree with 13 grandchildren to realise his 46-year dream of obtaining a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD.) from Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM).

Datuk Dr. Md Damiri Md Sairi, 70, a retiree from the Perak Land and Mines Director’s Office, successfully completed his PhD. in the field of land and forest studies and received his scroll today.

“We will never finish learning. Knowledge is like a vast ocean. The more we learn the more we don’t know. There are many elderly people abroad who continue their education, but in Malaysia, it’s strange to study during retirement,“ said the father of five in a statement shared by UPM today.

He said in addition to being driven by his keen interest to explore the field of his former career after retiring in 2011, strict discipline was also a big factor in his success.

Md Damiri said it was this discipline that enabled him to successfully complete his studies despite almost giving up due to challenges he faced during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“At that time I was the chairman of the mosque in Rapat Setia Baru, Ipoh which required many operating procedures, plus my commitment to the children, who were all in Kuala Lumpur.

“However, with strict discipline and support from my beloved wife and children, I am very grateful and fortunate for this achievement,“ he said.

It was an even more memorable day for Md Damiri because he shared the historic moment of graduating with his son, Dr. Mohamad Hazrol, 30, who also received a PhD. from UPM.

Mohamad Hazrol said seeing his father striving to obtain a PhD. was the main source of inspiration for him to pursue his PhD.

“If my 70-year-old father can do it, then so can I,“ he said.–Bernama

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