pelajar antabangsa cekalUUM ONLINE: The spread of the COVID-19 outbreak in the country has not only affected local students who are not allowed to return to their hometowns, but international students have also been hit by the implementation of the Movement Control Order (MCO).

Although they are not allowed to return to their home countries, the ban has not put a burden on them, in fact it has made them resilient in facing the challenges throughout the duration of the MCO that has been set in place since 18 March in a bid to prevent the COVID-19 outbreak.

Fellow student, Mr. Hasan S.M Mehedi from Bangladesh, said he had no choice but to comply with the MCO directive and take necessary steps to ensure his safety and well-being.

"We will stay in our rooms and remain on campus. Besides that we also stay connected with our friends through social media.

“For me, the most challenging part is when I cannot meet my friends and cannot do group activities as usual.

"However, I am grateful that UUM provides us with free meals three times a day that are distributed at the respective blocks or at the cafeteria  as well as rendering other forms of assistance," he said.

Mr. Hasan expressed hope that the COVID-19 outbreak would come to an end soon and that situation would go back to normal so that he and his friends could go back to attending lectures once more.

Meanwhile, Mr. Muhammad Hatim of Pakistan said the devastating situation made it impossible for post-graduate students to meet up with their supervisors face-to-face.

According to him, his movement to obtain materials for his thesis work became limited following the MCO directive; however the ban never once became a burden.

“The time on our hands now is also used to review and finish up our thesis besides we can further enhance our acts of worship at our respective rooms.

"I can only pray for my thesis to be completed in the stipulated time and also for the COVID-19 outbreak to be over soon," he said.

Meanwhile, Ms. Xu Xueying from China expressed concern over not being able to return to her home country of China as a result of the MCO directive.

"Although many flights back home have been cancelled at this time, I am grateful that our welfare is always maintained," she said.