BINTULU: Over 200 students of Universiti Putra Malaysia Bintulu Campus (UPMKB) were very lucky to be part of the ‘[email protected] Programme’ yesterday, as they got to meet Sime Darby Bhd president and group chief executive officer (CEO) Tan Sri Datuk Seri Mohd Bakke Salleh first hand.
The programme was run for the first time at the campus’ Dewan Seri Kenyalang, where Mohd Bakke was present as the invited speaker.
The Sime Darby bigwig shared with the attendees his experience – from both personal and professional perspectives.
UPM vice-chancellor Prof Datin Paduka Dr Aini Ideris said it was indeed a very special day for UPMKB students in that they got the chance to be with a high-profile corporate figure who came and shared his experience and aspirations with them.
“His presence here speaks volumes about his commitment of seeing our young students do well in the future, contributing ideas and strategies slated for the betterment of this country,” she said in her welcome remarks.
According to her, the ‘[email protected] Programme’ is an initiative by the Higher Education Ministry that has been running since last year.
It involves direct interactions between more than 45 CEOs from various industries and varsity students across the nation.
“The programme was designed with the ultimate goal of positioning Malaysia to greater heights by combining the knowledge and experience from both the industries and academics,” she said.
Dr Aini also said as part of the Malaysian Education Blueprint 2015-2025 (Higher Education), Malaysia would aspire to produce graduates with balanced and holistic attributes.
“This [email protected] Programme is expected to help universities improve their existing curriculum through the sharing of knowledge, experience and best practices from the CEOs towards formulating new integrated activities via holistic learning,” she added.
Yesterday’s session at UPMKB was the second leg run by UPM, following the previous one at the Serdang Campus in April where the guest speaker was AirAsia co-founder and group CEO, Tan Sri Tony Fernandes.
The Serdang programme, which was also broadcast live via online streaming, was attended by some 4,000 university students and staff members.
“The impact from that single event has been astounding. UPM and AirAsia are now working together on several fronts via capitalisation of the strength from both parties.
“What we value most from the [email protected] Programme is the knowledge gained from every session (with the corporate figures),” Dr Aini added.
The UPMKB session was also attended by Assistant Minister for Infrastructure Development Datuk Talib Zulpilip, UPMKB Faculty of Agriculture and Food Sciences dean Dr Zamri Rosli, members of the university’s management and academic units, as well as representatives of the Higher Education Ministry, public universities and industries.
Later, Mohd Bakke witnessed the exchange of memorandum of understanding (MOU) documents between UPM and the state Forest Department.
The Faculty of Agriculture and Food Sciences of UPMKB is currently carrying out many research collaborations and training with the Forest Department.
The MOU is on research collaboration and partnership, staff training, development of new curriculum on forest ranger training, as well as the opportunities to prepare the master plan for national parks across Sarawak.
Dr Aini and senior assistant director Jack Liam represented UPMKB and state Forest Department, respectively, at the signing ceremony.