Thursday, April 8, 2010


Universiti Putra Malaysia (English: Putra University, Malaysia), or UPM, is a leading research intensive public university located in central Peninsular Malaysia, close to the capital city, Kuala Lumpur. It was formerly known as Universiti Pertanian Malaysia or Agricultural University of Malaysia (Malay: universiti, university; pertanian, agriculture; Malaysia). UPM is a research university offering undergraduate and postgraduate courses with a research focus on agricultural sciences and its related fields. Ranked joint 364th best university in the world in 2007 by Quacquarelli Symonds, UPM is taking steps to boost its research capabilities both in and beyond the scope of agriculture.


One can trace the origins of UPM to the School of Agriculture officially instituted on 21 May, 1931 by John Scott, an administrative officer of the British colonial Straits Settlements. The School was located on a 22-acre spread in Serdang, Selangor state. The School began by offering the three-year Diploma program and a one-year Certificate course. By 1941 the School had succeeded in training 321 officers, with 155 having obtained the Diploma and 166 the Certificate. This school was, on 23 June, 1942, declared to be the College of Agriculture Malaya by Sir Edward Gent, the Governor of the Malayan Union. In 1948 it was proposed that this College be upgraded to a University. The proposal, however, was shelved with the declaration of the Malayan Emergency in the middle of that same year.

In 1960 the Faculty of Agriculture at the University of Malaya was established. On 1 January, 1962 a statute was approved to make the Council of the College of Agriculture Malaya an authority of the University of Malaya.

The formation of an agricultural university providing programs of study at the degree level was suggested by the then Honorable Deputy Prime Minister, Tun Haji Abdul Razak Hussein, on 31 March, 1969 at the opening ceremony of the additional wing to the College of Agriculture Malaya at Serdang, Selangor.

The establishment of Universiti Pertanian Malaysia finally culminated with the enacting of the Incorporation Order signed by His Majesty The Yang Di-Pertuan Agong as provided for under the Universities and University Colleges Act, 1971, and published in the Government Gazette as P.U.(A) 387 dated 29 October, 1971. The said Incorporation Order provides as follows :

"There shall be a higher educational institution having the status of University, which shall be a body corporate for the purpose of providing, promoting and developing higher education in the fields of Agriculture, Forestry, Veterinary Science, Natural Sciences, Engineering Sciences, Technology, Social Sciences, Humanities and Education as well as to provide for research and the accumulation and advancement of knowledge and the dissemination of such knowledge in the aforesaid fields of study."

The creation of this University was based on the merger of the College of Agriculture Malaya with the Faculty of Agriculture, University of Malaya. Dr. Mohd. Rashdan bin Haji Baba was appointed as the first Vice-Chancellor by virtue of the provisions of section 18 of the Universities and University Colleges Act, 1971.

Universiti Pertanian Malaysia embarked on its first academic session in July 1973 with three foundation faculties: the Faculty of Agriculture, the Faculty of Forestry, and the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science. Beside the three faculties there was a Basic Sciences Division. The pioneer student enrolment was 1,559 for the Bachelor's degere in Agriculture, Diploma in Home Technology, Diploma in Animal Health and Production, Diploma in Science with Education, and Preliminary Programme.

In the early eighties, however, UPM expanded its areas of concentration by including Science and Technology subjects in its fields of study. In 1994 UPM embarked on its ambitious plan to develop into a futuristic university. It would provide better and up-to-date skills and systems for science and technology education. To do so, it would take full advantage of the rapid development in information technology. UPM thereafter transformed itself into a borderless campus, its name and reputation stretching far beyond Malaysian boundaries.

The climax of the transformation came with the changing of the name from Universiti Pertanian Malaysia to Universiti Putra Malaysia, in honour of Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra Al-Haj. The change was officially announced on 3 April 1997 by the then Prime Minister, Dato' Seri Dr. Mahathir bin Mohamad. This was a strategic way of portraying the status of UPM as a center of higher education capable of providing various fields of study deemed necessary to facilitate national development in the new millennium. This was especially true of UPM's provisions for studies in Information Technology (ITUPM was renamed in honour of Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra Al-Haj, Malaysia's first Prime Minister. The renaming was looked upon as a strategic move in preparing UPM to become a versatile higher learning institution aligned with Malaysia’s strategic plans in dynamic high-technology. It lies near the heart of the Multimedia Super Corridor, the first large-scale high-technology initiative of the Malaysian government, and near the new administrative capital, Putrajaya. The latter, too, was named after Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra


The university since its inception as Universiti Pertanian Malaysia, has had two branch campuses apart from the main campus at Serdang, Selangor. The UPM branch campuses were located in Bintulu, Sarawak and Mengabang Telipot, Terengganu. The campus in Terengganu, however, has been upgraded to the University College of Science and Technology Malaysia (KUSTEM), with its own management and administration. KUSTEM officially broke away from UPM on 1 July, 2001. The Medicine and Health Sciences faculty maintains a campus complex adjacent to a local hospital in Serdang.

Academic Profile

UPM began its academic life in 1973 with three founding Faculties and a Division of Basic Sciences. The first intake of 1,559 students were for the Bachelor's degree in Agriculture, Diploma in Home Technology, Diploma in Animal Health and Production, Diploma in Science with Education, and Preliminary Programme. Currently UPM offers 73 Bachelor's degree programmes, eight Diploma programmes, and 12 Masters and Doctoral programmes. There are 16 Faculties, eight Centres, six Institutes, two Schools, a University Park and a branch campus in Bintulu, Sarawak. The Doctor of Medicine program provided by the Medical and Health Science division of the university was fully recognized by the Malaysia Medical Council on June 5, 2001.

Faculty of Engineering

The Faculty of Engineering of Universiti Putra Malaysia was established on 1 January 1975 at the main Serdang Campus, some 22 kilometers to the south of Kuala Lumpur. It is one of the largest faculties at UPM with a student population of over 3000 owes as much to the excellence of its academic staff as to facilities and infrastructure that are being continuously made available. The campus’ location at the heart of the Multimedia Super Corridor (MSC) provides the faculty with the excellent access to the array of IT and multimedia facilities available in the Corridor. With the UPMNET providing sophisticated campus-wide broadband ATM network, coupled with the computing facilities at the faculty, students and staff have ready access to the latest in IT, Multimedia, CAD/CAM and internet facilities. Above all, they can enjoy the placid and conducive working environment in the famous ‘green campus’ which aesthetically encapsulates UPM’s history as the nation’s first agriculture college.

The eight academic departments housed within the faculty offer a similar number of Bachelor of Engineering degree programmers. The faculty is proud of the international character of its student population. Out of 800 postgraduate’s population, almost fifty percent are international student. In additional to provide excellent facilities and opportunities for teaching and research, the faculty has established Research Centre to R&D on selected priority areas of engineering and its related fields.

Faculty of Engineering-brief history

1975 Faculty of Agricultural Engineering was established and offered one Bachelor of Engineering (Agriculture) program

1985 the faculty was changed to Faculty of Engineering and offered 4 Bachelor of Engineering Programs.

1996 the faculty was expanded to 8 Departments offering 8 Bachelor of Engineering programs

1999 Phase 1 of New Engineering Complex was completed.



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