Dato Panglima Kinta Dr Haji Mohamed Eusoff

 

Eusoff College and Eusoff Hall bear the proud name of Dato Panglima Kinta Haji Mohamed Eusoff, CBE, JP, LLD, Pro-Chancellor of the then University of Malaya in Singapore and Chairman of the University Council from 1953 to 1957. The Hall was named after him in recognition of his outstanding services to education including the important role he played in the Carr-Saunders Commission in the establishment of the very university that he loved.

 

Dato Eusoff was born in Ipoh in 1897 to a family of traditional Malay chiefs of the Kinta district in Perak. He received his education at the Anderson School in Ipoh before embarking on a career in the Malayan Civil Service, where he served with great distinction. In later life as a leading member of the traditional Malay ruling class, Dato Haji Mohamed Eusoff served as the Panglima Kinta of Perak in 1951. He was also a member of the Perak State Council (1952) and the Perak Council of Regency (1955). Dato Eusoff also held positions on the Ipoh Town Board (1953), was President of the All-Malaya Muslim Missionary Society, the Ipoh Red Cross Society (1955), and also President of the Perak Amateur Athletic Association. His other contributions to society included being a Justice of Peace in Selangor in 1948 and in Perak in 1953.

 

However, Dato Eusoff's most significant contribution was in education and in the establishment of the University of Malaya in Singapore. He was appointed as the only Malay member of the Carr-Saunders Commission on 'University Education in Malaya' in March 1947, which eventually oversaw the establishment of a university in Singapore. For his efforts, he was inducted into the Court of the University of Malaya at its first meeting in 1949 and subsequently conferred an honorary doctorate in law in 1951. In 1953, Dato Eusoff became the Chairman of the University Council and in 1954 the Pro-Chancellor of the University. He was a strong advocate of an all-rounded education saying often that it was 'life outside the classroom' that enriched the lives of students as much as their academic studies; and that each generation of students should 'contribute something new, challenging and stimulating to the richness and diversity of university life.'

 

Today, Eusoff College and later Eusoff Hall stand as the only institution that honour the legacy of this great man, and Eusoffians continue to live the philosophies of their namesake. The traditions that he set out for the university as a whole are the traditions that Eusoffians emulate every day.

 



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