Our founder’s passion for delivering quality education is deeply rooted and personal in nature. Dr. Mary Lim is a self-made woman who recognised from a very early age that only good education has the power to lift a person out of trying circumstances. She has put this theory to the test and persevered throughout her younger years by working hard to send herself to school to get good education. Today, she is a living testament that quality education goes a long way in improving people’s lives. From her personal experiences, she made it her life’s work to deliver quality education within reach of many.
She first ventured into education in the late 80s before starting the then PDS School (now Seri Mulia Sarjana School) in 1992. The school opened with just 14 students which exploded to over a hundred students by the end of the school year. Word soon spread about the tiny Pre-school that offered warm and nurturing environment for pre-schoolers to start their journey through life-long learning. This word of mouth popularity and growing public confidence fuelled the phenomenal growth of the school. Reaching deep into her own personal resources and through sheer dedication, the school reached its 1000 student mark in 5 years.
Excellence has always been the cornerstone of the educational philosophy she put in place. A firm believer in balanced, holistic education, Dr. Mary Lim put in place an academic programme that is rich in the arts and music. In the early years of the school, she was mother to all her students as well as her teachers. Her warm and caring persona spread throughout the school and became the basis for the school culture – a learning community that provides a warm and nurturing environment where young minds thrive in pursuit of excellence.
Dr. Mary Lim is a strong proponent in generating nationalistic pride and fervour among her students. This is a reflection of her desire to give back to the society and showing appreciation for the generosity of The Government of His Majesty, the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Negara Brunei Darussalam. She led the school community in participating in national events as well as international events showcasing the best that Brunei has to offer in events such as the Asia Pacific Economic Conference, SEA Games and the International ASEAN Defence Ministerial Meeting held in Brunei Darussalam.
In October 2002, Dr. Mary Lim was bestowed the PIKB Medal (Excellent Service Medal) by His Majesty, the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam in recognition of her excellent service to His Majesty’s government and the people of Brunei Darussalam. In 2007, Dr. Mary Lim was the recipient of the Excellence Award of the Asia Pacific Business Leaders for her outstanding socio-cultural achievements. She was once again recognised by the Government of His Majesty, the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam in 2010 and conferred the PJK Medal (Meritorious Service Medal) for social service in Brunei Darussalam. In the following year, she was given recognition by China and was presented with the Outstanding Overseas Chinese Education Enthusiastic People Award.
Her stance as a business leader and innovator of new ideas gained her recognition as an Outstanding Entrepreneur in the Struggle History of Chinese Hundred Outstanding Entrepreneurs in 2014.
Dr. Mary Lim is also among the elite group of 50 women dubbed as the Most Influential Women in Brunei.