CHETTIAR, Palaniappan Ramanathan

2022 International Alumnus of the YearRAMANTHAN CHETTIAR, Palaniappan


PhD in Education

Graduation year


Tan Sri Dato' Dr Palaniappan Ramanathan Chettiar helps people to learn and perform and has elevated higher education, human resource development, healthcare and social entrepreneurship and philanthropy standards in Malaysia.

Graduating from Federation University with a PhD in Education in 2018, Palan also has a PhD in Management; has attended Harvard Business School; has a Masters in Science; a Masters in Arts and a Bachelor of Science (Chemistry). He has authored 18 books.

Palan’s work in Technical Vocational Education & Training (TVET) has improved learning quality and set benchmarks in the region. As a champion of employment opportunities, Palan has vigorously promoted TVET to boost employment and conducted research to improve TVET practices. Palan  was appointed by the Government of Malaysia to serve as Director of the Human Resources Development Corporation, an agency tasked to skill Malaysia’s workforce.

In the higher education sector, Palan has served as member on the board of University Malaya; Director of University Malaya Holdings; and Chairman of University Malaya Hospital Specialist Centre. He has also had roles as Pro Chancellor of the University of Cyberjaya and as Advisor to the Asia Metropolitan University and Colleges.

In the business world Palan has publicly listed two companies and as a social entrepreneur he founded the Palan  Foundation to provide scholarships to disadvantaged youth and has helped many young people gain access to higher education, substantially improving their lives. In healthcare, Dr Palan  served as Advisor to the King of Malaysia as a member of the Independent Emergency Committee during the pandemic crisis.

Palan’s outstanding professional achievements have been recognised with a British Society of Learning & Development Fellowship, while the King of Malaysia bestowed upon him Malaysia’s second highest civilian honour of Tan Sri in 2016, a title restricted to only 355 living individuals at any one time. Palan was also conferred the Datoship title in 2011 in recognition of his lifelong service and contributions to the community.