Undergraduate Focus: Increasing exposure with IT IAB
Help University has established an IT Industry Advisory Board (IAB) to ensure greater relevance in its curriculums and to widen students’ exposure to internships, research and other projects. The HELP IAB, officially launched in mid-March, is aimed at developing IT talent to ensure an abundant supply of skilled graduates from HELP University.
Harres Tan, group CEO of Rototype International and HT Consulting Group and Ganesh Bangah, group CEO of Friendster and President of MOL AccessPortal Bhd chair the board which consists of industry members and HELP academics.
“We are identifying projects with which we can get these students to work with members of the board,” says Dr Sien Ven Yu, Head of the Department of Information Technology at HELP University.
Several of the board members already have such plans with Ganesh planning to turn MOL’s large ‘technical backlog’ into students’ projects at some point in the future.
The HELP curriculum has already benefitted from Industry Board member Chris Chan, CEO of TMS Bhd, who has invested time to train the students and lecturers in using Joget, an open source web platform for developing workflow applications.
“We are going to incorporate the application in our curriculum to teach students about entrepreneurship,” says Dr Sien.
Changes in the curriculum are meant to align the knowledge and behaviour of students more with the expectations of the industry.
“We have to be nimble in what we teach in universities and colleges,” says Tan. “IT is one of the most financially rewarding professions, yet we face a serious shortage of IT professionals. I congratulate HU for its initiative in setting up the IT Industry Advisory Board. Together with industry supporters like Multimedia Development Corporation (MDeC) and leading Malaysian IT companies, we can ensure a healthy growth for the industry with an abundant supply of talented and skilled graduates from HELP University.
“We are only generating between 700 and 800 IT graduates annually,” says Head of Talent at MDeC, Muhammad Imran Kunalan, who delivered a presentation – The Supply and Demand of ICT graduates — at the official launch of HELP University‘s IAB.
Datuk Dr Paul Chan, Vice-Chancellor and President of HU, says HELP University has throughout its 26 years been living up to its mission of helping people succeed in life and to live a life of significance.
Since its founding in 1986, HELP has grown from humble beginnings to a successful model of an innovative university, with more than 11,000 students and the numbers are growing rapidly.
As a leading institution of higher education in Malaysia, HELP has pioneered twinning programmes with foreign universities and many of its students have been accepted into Ivy League universities overseas.
For more information, visit www.help.edu.my