On 1 Oct 2010, after a short Q&A session, the Board of Examiners for Higher Degree, Faculty of Built Environment, University Malaya awarded me the Master of Science (Architecture).
Excerpts from the examiners' reports....
"...this is the first time that a research of this kind (has been) conducted in Malaysia. Its findings constitute a significant contribution towards a knowledge gap in the history and theory of architecture in the country." (Prof. Ezrin Arbi)
"...the candidate has produced an original work with the purpose of establishing a relationship between architects' design preoccupations and architectural excellence. ...the dissertation should be able to stand alone with the qualitative evidence and argument that had been produced for examination." (Dr. Khairul Anwar)
It was a nice birthday present! I am humbled and elated, grateful to God for sustaining me, and most of all thankful to my lovely wife for starting me on it and pushing me on right to the end.
Thanks to everyone who encouraged me in their own special way!
The acknowledgment page in the dissertation reads as follows.
Foremost, I’d like to thank my supervisor, Dr. Naziaty Mohd. Yaacub, for her guidance and encouragement throughout the research, writing and presentation of this dissertation. It was a witty meeting of minds!
I am grateful to my friends and fellow practitioners, Ar Dr Lim Teng Ngiom and Ar Anthony Too for agreeing immediately to my request for pilot survey respondents and for furnishing this research with their thorough and meticulous answers.
My six sample architects deserve my sincere thanks for sharing their time, thoughts, drawings, and, in fact, their life experiences as architects to help illuminate the theoretical path of this investigation. They are, alphabetically: Ar Chester Chen, Ar Hau Woon San, Ar Datuk Kamil Merican, Ar Patrick Ngan, Ar Serrina Hijjas, and Ar Zafar Rozaly.
I am indebted to Professor Ch’ng Chwee Lye (Professor of Public Health, University of Texas) and Dr Veronica Ng (Associate Dean, Taylor’s University) for their insightful comments and leads.
I am also indebted to my research assistants who backed up their hard work with enthusiasm: Billy Chua, Goh Kai Kheng, Zoe Huang, Richard Lee, Ong Meng Jin, and Tang Li Qun.
And most especially, I thank my wife, Jane, and our children, Zoe, Matthew and Mark, for their grace to permit me the space and time to make this possible.