Curtin Sarawak to ‘Ignite the Spark’ in youth at MDeC-Curtin ICT Career Camp


Miri – 10 March 2011 – Secondary school students attending the MDeC-Curtin ICT Career Camp at the Curtin University, Sarawak Malaysia (Curtin Sarawak) campus this weekend can expect a most exhilarating time.

The 2-day camp from 12 to 13 March is being organised by Curtin Sarawak’s Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) and University Life departments and the Curtin Young Associates (CYA), the university’s exclusive club for secondary school students.

It is supported and sponsored by the Multimedia Development Corporation (MDeC), the agency responsible for the management of the Multimedia Super Corridor (MSC Malaysia).

The theme of the camp is Ignite the Spark and is focused on the development and marketing of mobile application systems. There will be workshops that will guide participants on how to use mobile application development software and give them pointers on packaging and marketing their final products.

According to University Life Officer Ansovinus Bonus Chai, the aim of the ICT Career Camp is to encourage students to engage in an ICT (information and communication technology)-based competition, in this case mobile application development. This is in line with the national agenda of promoting technopreneurship among Malaysians and steering them towards an ICT career path.

“We are not revealing the development software we will be using for the moment to keep the participants in suspense until the camp starts. They can be assured that the software has been tested extensively with our own students and found to be relatively easy to grasp and use,” said Terence Tan, an award-winning ECE senior lecturer and facilitator of the camp.

“The usage of smart gadgets like smartphones and tablets today is simply phenomenal, and every day, there is a growing need for bright and creative minds to develop more advanced applications to satisfy the demand of consumers. This camp will be an opportunity for our local students to explore the immense potential in technology development today,” added Tan.

In thanking MDeC for its sponsorship of the event, University Life Manager Haslina Abdul Malek said, “We are pleased to work with MDeC, which is a very strong supporter of events to create more awareness to ICT careers, especially in Sarawak.”

According to Haslina, there will be ice-breaking and teambuilding activities In between the workshops run by Curtin E-Fact, a student volunteer group that provides learning support to local students. This is aimed at developing group dynamics as the participants will be divided into several working teams.

In addition, the camp facilitators will coach the participants on presentation skills which they are expected to apply during the team project presentations at the end of the camp. The teams with the best applications and marketing pitches will be awarded cash prizes – RM500, RM300 and RM200 for the first, second and third-placed teams respectively.

Judging will be carried out by a panel comprising Siti Hajar Awaliah Binti Hassan, an executive of the K-Workers Development Department under the Capacity Development Division of MDeC; Associate Professor Dr Ashutosh Kumar Singh, Head of the ECE Department; and Suresh Reuben, an ECE lecturer and one of the camp facilitators.

The collaboration between Curtin Sarawak and MDeC will extend beyond the ICT Career Camp. Curtin Sarawak and MDeC will jointly organise an ICT talk for students in Miri next month, which will be on a considerably larger scale than this ICT Career Camp. In addition to creating an awareness of ICT career pathways available, the event will showcase some final year projects by ECE students of Curtin Sarawak to give the participants a better idea of what ICT involves.

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