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Vitalising collaborative ties with ViTrox

From left: Yeoh, Tan, Dr Low, Chu, Prof Chuah, Prof Ewe, Hew, Dr Yap.

UTAR and world-leading automated machine vision inspection solution provider ViTrox Corporation Berhad inked a memorandum of understanding (MoU) at UTAR Kampar Campus on 8 May 2019.

Signing the MoU were UTAR President Ir Prof Academician Dato’ Dr Chuah Hean Teik and ViTrox CEO-cum-President Chu Jenn Weng, while witnessing the signing were UTAR Vice President for Internationalisation and Academic Development Prof Ir Dr Ewe Hong Tat and ViTrox People Development Manager Jessica Tan Siew Ping.

Also present were UTAR Council Member Hew Fen Yee; ViTrox Management Information System Manager Dr Janaka Low Chee Kong; ViTrox People Management Manager Yeoh Siew Eng; UTAR Faculty of Engineering and Green Technology (FEGT) Dean Assoc Prof Dr Yap Vooi Voon; FEGT Deputy Deans Dr Lo Po Kim, Assoc Prof Ir Dr Ng Choon Aun, and Dr Tan Kok Tat; FEGT Heads of Department Assoc Prof Ir Dr Teh Peh Chiong, Ir Dr Chai Kim Hoe, and Dr Mathialagan Muniyadi; and ViTrox People Development Executives Timothy Chong Seang Chun and Chong Swit Yie.

Impressed by ViTrox’s growth and development as a homegrown high-tech firm as well as its fundamental principles of “Integrity”, “Accountability”, “Courage”, “Trust and Respect”, and “Gratitude and Care”, Prof Chuah mentioned that UTAR is more than delighted to collaborate with ViTrox in which both parties will start with R&D, student development activities, industrial training and professional development courses. “ViTrox’s ‘I.A.C.T.G. – The Power of 5’ core values is very much aligned with UTAR’s educational philosophy which are ‘Virtue and Morality’, ‘Knowledge and Intellect’, ‘Physical and Mental Health’, ‘Sociality and Humanitarianism’, ‘Aesthetics and Harmony’, and ‘Creativity and Innovation’. The belief in these values will certainly bring the two organisations closer,” the University President remarked, adding that UTAR, as a not-for-profit private university, has always received support from the people as well as the industries, thus deepening UTAR’s interest to work with reputable and upright organisation like ViTrox.

Also touching on the waning Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) interests among Malaysian students, Prof Chuah said, “I’m really happy to see industry player such as ViTrox being committed in promoting STEM education at the Penang International Science Fair. I think this is where the university and industry can work together in promoting science and technology to the general public, particularly the younger generation.” He added that it is essential to let others understand that science and engineering students can also become successful entrepreneurs and technopreneurs like Chu.

Seeing UTAR as a beacon of hope for helping the nation in producing talents, Chu expressed his confidence in collaborating with UTAR due to the university’s vision and track record of producing competent graduates. According to Chu, the idea of building a tech company in Malaysia by Malaysians sprouted during his trip to the Silicon Valley and visit to the Hewlett Packard Garage many years ago. “I also realised from this trip that universities play an important role to cultivate and promote the spirit of entrepreneurship and technopreneurship amongst students. Therefore, it is also my dream for the following decade to build a strong local ecosystem,” the CEO shared, adding that a solid local ecosystem will help encourage and promote more local start-ups. To Chu, this is because graduates will have the confidence and support in materialising their innovative ideas instead of just thinking that they are only good enough to work in foreign multi-national companies.

Chu also explained that the talent pipeline created by the university will be an integral part of building a large and strong ecosystem. “There are academics and researchers who dedicate their lives to find solutions to problems which are very useful for the industry, hence further highlighting the importance of such university-industry collaboration. Without a strong local ecosystem, it will be challenging to reap the benefits from the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR). Therefore, it is important that for the next 10 years, we should be encouraging more people to study in STEM fields to ensure a strong talent pipeline which supports the 4IR,” he stated, expressing his hopes to seeing potential win-win synergies and initiatives between the two organisations.

The event reached its highlight with the signing of the MoU documents, followed by an exchange of souvenirs and a group photograph.

Prof Chuah (right) and Chu signing the MoU documents.

ViTrox Technologies was established in Penang in 2000 by Chu and Steven Siaw Kok Tong. Four years later, it was converted into a public limited company adopting the name of ViTrox Corporation Berhad. ViTrox designs and manufactures innovative, cutting-edge and cost-effective automated vision inspection equipment as well as system-on-chip embedded electronics devices for the semiconductor and electronics packaging industries. Its core products include the Machine Vision System (MVS), Automated Board Inspection (ABI) and Electronics Communication System (ECS).

The MoU between UTAR and ViTrox will see both parties jumpstarting a spectrum of purposeful and meaningful projects ranging from collaborative research and sharing of expertise, to enrichment and upskilling initiatives. Working closely with ViTrox in research collaboration, UTAR FEGT is looking into areas such as image processing, thermal analysis and robotics; while the Faculty of Information and Communication Technology (FICT) will explore the areas of Internet of Things gateway, predictive algorithm and Artificial Intelligence (AI). Besides facilitating in industry-focused postgraduate programmes and short courses for working adults in the northern region, UTAR and ViTrox will also work hand-in-hand in enriching and upskilling the working adults at ViTrox via professional trainings.

ViTrox is currently the latest addition to UTAR’s MoU fraternity comprising more than 330 partners from over 28 economies. These collaborative ties have been instrumental in catapulting the University to be a global university of educational excellence with transformative societal impact.

拉曼大学 Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman (UTAR)

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