Curtin Malaysia, Unimas set to enhance partnership

Mohamad Kadim presenting a token of appreciation to Giridharan.

MIRI, March 25: Curtin University Malaysia (Curtin Malaysia) and Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (Unimas) are set to enhance their ongoing partnership established under memorandums of understanding (MoU) signed in 2013 and 2015.

A dialogue was held at Curtin Malaysia campus recently between senior executives of Unimas and Curtin Malaysia to explore new ways in which the two universities can collaborate, particularly in the area of biotechnology, digital economy transformation and transformative learning.

These are to complement existing synergies in areas such as collaborative research, joint facilitation and supervision of postgraduate studies, participation in seminars and academic meetings, academic quality assurance and consultation, and academic programme development that have been steadily strengthened over the past six years.

Representing Curtin Malaysia at the meeting were Deputy Pro Vice-Chancellor Professor Beena Giridharan, chief operating officer Pieter Willem Pottas, acting Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Science Associate Professor Vincent Lee, acting Dean of the Faculty of Business Associate Professor Pauline Ho and Corporate Communications manager Nicholas Leong.

Heading the delegation from Unimas was Vice-Chancellor Professor Dato Mohamad Kadim Suaidi. He was accompanied by Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Research and Innovation Professor Wan Hashim Wan Ibrahim, Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Student Affairs and Alumni Professor Mohd. Fadzil Abdul Rahman, Dean of the Faculty of Resource Science and Technology Associate Professor Siti Noor Linda Taib, and Unimas’ Research, Innovation and Enterprise Centre (RIEC) director Professor Lo May Chiun.

Both Giridharan and Mohamad Kadim shared the latest achievements and future plans of their respective universities. Curtin Malaysia is looking forward to the completion of its new online Stock Market Trading Room, Engineering Research Laboratory and Centre for Excellence and Innovation, while Unimas is setting up its teaching hospital.

They concurred that both universities shared many similarities in outlook and operations, though Unimas was considerably larger with over 16,000 students and 10 faculties compared to Curtin Malaysia with just over 4,000 students and three faculties. In terms of campus size, both Unimas and Curtin Malaysia are fairly large, with 2,200 acres and 1,200 acres respectively. Coincidentally, Unimas celebrated its 25th anniversary last year, while Curtin Malaysia is marking its 20th anniversary this year.

Group photo of Unimas and Curtin Malaysia representatives.

During the dialogue, the Unimas delegation extended an invitation to Curtin Malaysia to be an event partner and exhibitor at the upcoming Unimas Innovation and Technology Exposition 2019 (InTEX19), which Curtin Malaysia readily accepted.

Themed ‘Research-Driven Innovation and Technology’, InTEX19 will be held from July 24 to 25 at Imperial Hotel, Kuching. Organised as part of Unimas’ ongoing research and innovation initiatives, it will serve as a platform for academics to showcase their research outcomes emanating from their research studies or other interdisciplinary research and development.

According to Lo, it would also provide the ideal platform for inventors, researchers and designers to exhibit their inventions, designs, prototypes and products to potential investors, manufacturers, distributors and marketers seeking new ideas.

Giridharan said Curtin Malaysia was pleased to support the event, given its strong relationship with Unimas. Curtin Malaysia is also keen to showcase its faculty-based research activities and the prospects of new research at the state government-owned BioValley Park, a biotechnology research facility, at Curtin Malaysia due to open later this year.

Following the meeting, the visitors toured the distributed learning and collaborative study facilities at Curtin Malaysia, which is a leader among Curtin’s international campuses in the use of distributed learning and technology-rich teaching pedagogies and facilities under Curtin’s ‘Learning For Tomorrow’ initiatives. — DayakDaily