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Our Founder


"Never stop learning because life never stops teaching."

Wadi Sofia was founded by our late Allahyarham Datuk Hassan Harun in 2002. Always an advocate for lifelong learning, the school was as much a work of passion as it was the materialisation of his vision. He had a long history with education, establishing several institutes of learning, namely Maktab Adabi (1970), Akademi Kenali (1974) Institut Pengajian Tinggi Adabi (1984), Institut Teknologi Tun Abdul Razak (1991) and Universiti Tun Abdul Razak (1997).

From an early age, our founder developed his self-confidence and self-reliance when, for his English primary education, he experienced boarding school life while attending the Sultan Ibrahim School in Pasir Mas. During his secondary years at Sultan Ismail College, he developed a social awareness that became the foundation for his perspective on both life and education. 

Despite coming from an impoverished background, he had big dreams and desired to achieve more. In 1966, he continued his higher education in University of Malaya (UM) only to become involved in various student movements, stirred by the politics of the time. Failing his first year, he left UM and thus began his career as a teacher and educator. While teaching in various private schools in Kelantan, he saw a need to create more opportunities for dropout students to qualify them to continue their higher education. With this mission in mind, he started Maktab Adabi, a place for second chances and an opportunity to lift up his countrymen.

In 1971, already with wife and a son, he decided to practice what he preached and re-entered university and finally received his Bachelor in International Relations from UM in July 1974. Ever eager to move forward, he returned to his love of teaching even before his graduation and founded Akademi Kenali in January 1974. Not one to rest on his laurels, he did his post-graduate education in Asian Institute of Management (AIM) in Manila, and received his Master in Management in 1982. And for his achievements and contributions to society, he was also awarded four honorary doctorates, namely for Education in Entrepreneurship from Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris (UPSI), for Management from Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM), for Education from Universiti Tun Abdul Razak (UniTAR), and for Business Administration from the International Management Centres in the UK.

While he had noteworthy success both in business and politics, his first love had always been education. Upon his retirement as Chairman of KUB, he returned to his beloved Kelantan to become the Principal of Wadi Sofia Schools. With the belief that everyone is a lifelong student and education never end, he persisted in encouraging and motivating students, believing each one had the spark for greatness.

On 31st December 2020, Datuk Hassan returned to his Creator and left behind a loving family, a legacy of devoted educators, and countless lifelong students. He envisioned a Wadi Sofia that nurtures and elevates every student that join us to their fullest potential and see them succeed beyond their limitations.

We aim to carry on his vision and hope you will join us too.

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