TODAY, there has been a paradigm shift in the way higher education is conducted. It is not just about helping students to get their paper qualifications. Theoretical study alone will not be enough to empower graduates with the ability to build national competitiveness. They are the future and it is essential to have the capacity for global skills.
Rian Putra, a Diploma in Electrical and Electronics student at Kuala Lumpur Metropolitan University College (KLMU), personifies real world practice championed by the tertiary body. He has invented a chocolate vending machine as part of the Poster Presentation under the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology.
This project helped him not just to innovate, but also to acquire problem-solving, presentation and marketing skills. The exposure to each subject makes it conducive to understand intangibles and challenges that cannot be experienced or understood in a classroom.
The Work of Art event at Publika in Kuala Lumpur in February is another example of how Faculty of Art and Design students fit into the real world.
Apart from showing their creativity in the fashion, graphic design and multimedia project, they gained experience in planning, people management, teamwork and presentation. Learning takes place when academic performance and business enterprises are fused to provide a meaningful experience.
This vision of industry within the university will gather momentum when the new campus in Wangsa Maju is ready in 2015. The campus will also house 4,000 students as residents in its hotel-styled condominiums. The grounds include six blocks of faculty buildings with a medical centre, an administration building and student activity areas.
The higher education institution is promoting the Life's a Trip contest to help school-leavers discover their career path. The contest ends June 3. Visit www.discoveru.com.my for details.