15 August 2023 at 10:00 am

Tribute to a longtime friend of New Zealand

Yong Kee Chiang (or KC Yong as he was widely known) of Malaysia – who passed on 19 July – was a proud New Zealand alumnus who was much respected for the tremendous role he played in growing the bilateral education relationship between Malaysia and New Zealand.  

KC Yong Malaysia tribute 1
KC Yong (centre) with alumni at University of Auckland's Alumni and Friends Reception in Kuala Lumpur in 2016. Photo credit: University of Auckland

Education New Zealand Manapou ki te Ao (ENZ) would like to share a tribute to the memory of KC Yong, Chairman of SELSET Education, Malaysia, particularly to his tremendous contribution over a lifetime to growing the education relationship between New Zealand and Malaysia. 

KC – as he was fondly known – first connected with New Zealand as an international student studying engineering at the University of Auckland. His experience studying and living in the country left him with a deep, lifelong appreciation for New Zealand education.  

It was likely this close connection to New Zealand that led KC to set up SELSET Education, a pioneer New Zealand specialist education consultancy in 2002. Over the past 21 years, KC’s efforts have seen SELSET grow to become the largest Malaysia-based education agency recruiting international students for New Zealand.  

ENZ’s Regional Director – Asia, Ben Burrowes, said it was a real privilege to have known and worked with KC, who was so passionate about New Zealand education.  

“KC and his son Rick – as well as their extended family who work for SELSET – have held close working relationships with our international education sector for decades. KC’s passing is a huge loss. I would like to personally acknowledge his immense contribution to the education relationship between New Zealand and Malaysia over the last few decades.”  

ENZ’s Acting Market Manager – Malaysia and Indonesia, Naluri Bella, also recalls her association with KC Yong and SELSET Education.  

“KC was a pioneer in the international education space for Malaysia and will certainly be missed. His legacy lives on in his family and team at SELSET Education.”  

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