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Premier tech status for Malaysian universities

www.nst.com.my/education

Digital disruption is creating new job opportunities and changing the manner in which work is done. The World Economic Forum predicts that 65 per cent of students today will be working in jobs that have yet to be defined, and most of them will require digital skills.

Now, more than ever, Malaysia needs to equip its youth with the right skill sets and mindset to ensure that they remain relevant.

Recently, HELP University, Islamic International University Malaysia (IIUM) and Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman have been recognised as Premier Digital Tech Institutions, joining 13 others with the same status.

This initiative is jointly developed by the Education Ministry and Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) to produce top talents and future leaders in digital technology.

Premier Digital Tech Institutions provide an optimum ecosystem in preparing graduates to meet industry demand. Institutions applying for the recognition have to undergo meticulous assessments to ensure that they provide quality tech education and facilities.

According to the Deputy Dean of IIUM Kulliyyah of Information Technology Student Affairs, MDEC has set a high standard, which does not only look into the courses offered and student achievements, but also the support is given by the university.

It includes those provided by IIUM’s Counselling and Career Services Centre, which not only offers career advice but also builds relationships with the industry and organise events to benefit them and its students.

For HELP University, the recognition and status will boost its mission to produce self-directing graduates, who can master new skills efficiently.

Prior to being recognised, HELP University had to undergo intensive assessments by an auditing team comprising representatives from the industry, Higher Education Department and MDEC.

The Dean of the Faculty of Computing and Digital Technology stated that the aim is to instil in students the attitude and values to prepare them for a lifetime of continuous learning and leadership.

The university’s close links with the industry have enabled it to introduce an innovative series of final-year projects and internship programmes, which are supervised by practising IT professionals.

This arrangement not only offers students valuable work experience but also provide them with specific knowledge and specialised skills.

At the recent award ceremony, Malaysia’s Education Minister said that Premier Digital Tech Institutions would ensure that Malaysians were proficient in data analytics, artificial intelligence, robotics and digital marketing.

Talent is key for Malaysia to succeed in the Fourth Industrial Revolution (IR4.0). It is critical that institutions, industry players and the Government work together to prepare local talent for future jobs.

The Chief Executive Officer of MDEC stated that the corporation was a strong proponent of public-private partnerships, and this Premier Digital Tech Institutions initiative was a great example of how such alliances could powerfully impact the growth of Malaysia’s digital economy.

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