UTAR FICT shakes hands with 14 industry partners to educate IT talents

UTAR and a total of 14 industry partners from Malaysia came together to form a strategic university-industry partnership. The partnership was officially established during the memorandum of understanding (MoU) exchange ceremony held between UTAR and the 14 industry partners at UTAR Kampar Campus on 4 March 2020.

From left: Dr Choo, Prof Faidz, Kok, Chan, Chooi, Liang, Kek, Tee, Ong, Prof Ewe, Dr Sumitra, Prof Choong, Datin Suriza, Cheah, Ng, Ann, Chua, Chung, Au and Dr Liew

The 14 new industry partners include TNG Digital Sdn Bhd, Finexus Sdn Bhd, Worldline International (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd, Globeoss Sdn Bhd, Revenue Techpark Sdn Bhd, Craft Guru Sdn Bhd, Bizacademia Sdn Bhd, GNey Software Sdn Bhd, OnNet Consulting Sdn Bhd, Infusion Information Technology Sdn Bhd, Infomativ Sdn Bhd, NEXPlatform Sdn Bhd, W Tech Marketing Sdn Bhd, and E Goodeal Sdn Bhd.

Exchanging the MoU with the industry partners on behalf of UTAR was its President Ir Prof Dr Ewe Hong Tat and the ceremony was witnessed by Vice President for Talent Development and Digital Entrepreneurship of Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) Dr Sumitra Nair. Exchanging the MoU on behalf of the companies were Lead Specialist, Technology and Mobile of TNG Digital Sdn Bhd Au Keng Weng, Senior Solution Manager of Finexus Sdn Bhd Chung Wai Ming, Head of Human Resource of Worldline International (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd Connie Chua, Chief Executive Officer of Globeoss Sdn Bhd Ann Wan Kuan, Group Chief Technology Officer of Revenue Techpark Sdn Bhd Dino Ng Shih Fang, Computational Thinking Specialist of Craft Guru Sdn Bhd Cheah Hew Mee, Director for Marketing and Operations of Bizacademia Sdn Bhd Datin Suriza Hing Abdullah, Managing Director of GNey Software Sdn Bhd Tee Ke Yeng, Group Managing Director of OnNet Consulting Sdn Bhd Kek Hean Chee, Director of Infusion Information Technology Sdn Bhd Alex Ong Chin An, Director of Infomativ Sdn Bhd Liang Yit Wen, Chief Executive Officer of NEXPlatform Sdn Bhd Alvin Chooi, Director of W Tech Marketing Sdn Bhd Chan Wai Mun and Director of E Goodeal Sdn Bhd Kok Wei Liang.

Also present at the ceremony were UTAR Vice President for R&D and Commercialisation Ts Prof Dr Faidz bin Abd Rahman, UTAR Vice President for Student Development and Alumni Relations Prof Dr Choong Chee Keong, Dean of Faculty of Information and Communication Technology (FICT) Ts Assoc Prof Dr Liew Soung Yue, Director of Division of Community and International Networking Assoc Prof Dr Lai Soon Onn, Channel Director of Intelligent Computing of Huawei Technologies (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd Eric Yue, Technical Director of Intelligent Computing of Huawei Technologies (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd Wang Wenbin, industry partners and UTAR staff.

Prof Ewe highlighting on the importance of university-industry collaborations

Reaffirming UTAR’s internationalisation commitment and appreciation towards its 400 over collaborative partners, Prof Ewe professed that it is essential for university-industry collaboration in this day and age in order to keep abreast of the latest developments and trends. “As one of the Premier Digital Tech Universities (PDTU), this collaboration is indeed an initiative by UTAR to work with local companies to develop industry-relevant syllabus and materials for our digital technology students. UTAR continues to expand its effort to collaborate with the industry because we want to develop our students’ computational thinking. For instance, the opportunity for students to participate in an industrial study visit allows them to explore the fundamental concepts of computer science and digital making. The industrial placement of our students, as well as attachment and mutual visits by staff members for research or curriculum development in these companies, would also serve as a platform for them to explore their strengths in areas, namely Internet of Things (IoT), Data Science, Cybersecurity and Artificial Intelligence. On top of that, our students will also be able to hone their innovation, leadership, communication, collaboration and entrepreneurial skills,” he mentioned.

Dr Sumitra explaining the importance of digital innovation for future workforce

Emphasising on the importance of digital innovation and competencies for the future workforce, Dr Sumitra applauded UTAR’s inventiveness in establishing university-industry partnerships in order to meet the demands of jobs of the Industrial Revolution 4.0. “MDEC is indeed glad to work together with industries and academic partners to create future digital creators by exposing students to the creative and innovative aspects of digital technology. Digital innovation is recreating all sectors and changing the work landscape. Therefore, to ensure our Malaysians remains competitive it is crucial for us to equip youth with digital skills so that they are prepared and pertinent for the future.” She added, “I believe, today’s MoU between UTAR and a total of 14 new industry partners will bring UTAR students closer to understanding how technologies can foster their interest to explore, thus stimulating new ideas in generating digital innovations and transforming this talent pool into a professional workforce in the future. Last but not least, once again well done to the Faculty of Information and Communication Technology of UTAR for your greatest effort in establishing meaningful university-industry partnerships.”

Currently, FICT is working closely with these industry partners to improve its curricula, and more importantly, to continuously restructure its programmes to be industry-relevant especially in the area of digital economy technology. The collaboration ties also aimed to provide an experiential learning environment for students as they participate in joint projects involving collaborative research.

UTAR’s FICT and Lee Kong Chian Faculty of Engineering and Science were awarded the Premier Digital Tech University status by MDEC.

Front row, from left: Prof Choong, Prof Ewe, Dr Sumitra, Prof Faidz and Dr Liew with the industry partners and UTAR staff

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