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Curtin Malaysia takes lead in creating young digital makers in Sarawak

Miri – 9 June 2017 – Curtin University, Malaysia (Curtin Malaysia) has collaborated with Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDeC) to launch the My Digital Maker Movement (#mydigitalmaker) in Sarawak.

The joint public-private-academia initiative aimed at transforming youth from mere digital users to makers in the digital economy, which also involves establishing a #mydigitalmaker hub at Curtin Malaysia, was launched in conjunction with the 2-day IEEE Digital Maker Expo held at the Curtin Malaysia campus recently.

Representing the university at the launch was Pro-Vice Chancellor, President and Chief Executive Professor Jim Mienczakowski while Director of Youth Division Sumitra Nair represented MDeC. Also present were Professor Ir. Lau Hieng Ho, Dean of Curtin Malaysia’s Faculty of Engineering and Science and Dr. Lenin Gopal, Head of the Faculty’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering.

#mydigitalmaker was officially launched by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak last year in an initiative to teach coding as part of the national school curriculum. As part of this, computational thinking and computer science is included in the primary and secondary school curricula as of this year. The movement is spearheaded by the Ministry of Education with the support of MDeC and will benefit over 1.2 million students from over 10,000 primary and secondary schools nationwide.

In addition, MDeC is working with the private sector and academia to set up digital maker centres in universities, schools and communities to will allow people to get hands-on experience outside of the formal curriculum.

At these centres, students who have demonstrated keen interest and talents in computer science can take advantage of tools such as programming kits, Arduino electronic boards and 3D printing machines to help them turn their ideas into creations. 

In his speech, Professor Mienczakowski remarked that Curtin Malaysia, as Curtin University’s regional hub for education and research, was very proud to be part of the initiative to create an active movement and dedicated maker spaces to encourage youths to become digital makers of the future.

He said the #mydigitalmaker hub housed in its new RM20 million Faculty of Engineering and Science building is a multi-purpose resource room well equipped with digital-making tools such as 3D printing machines, electronic gadgets, programming kits and measuring instruments to encourage and facilitate innovative tech-driven projects.

The hub will also support the annual Young Innovators Challenge Miri programme championed by Curtin Malaysia and involving trained Curtin Malaysia engineering and science students mentoring secondary school teams in crafting solutions to real-life challenges using Arduino programming kits. Winners of the Challenge go on to represent Sarawak in the national-level competition.

In addition to MDeC and Curtin Malaysia, the #mydigitalmaker hub at Curtin Malaysia is supported by Sarawak Energy Berhad, All Aboard Young Leaders Center (AAYLC), IM4U, Chumbaka and Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE).

For more information on Curtin Malaysia, visit its website (www.curtin.edu.my), its Facebook page (CurtinMalaysia), Twitter profile (curtinmalaysia), Google+ page (Curtin Malaysia), Instagram (curtinmalaysia) or YouTube channel (Curtin Malaysia).


(L-R) Sumitra Nair, Professor Mienczakowski, Professor Ir Lau and Dr Lenin launching the #mydigitalmaker hub at Curtin Malaysia.


Curtin Malaysia student mentors pose for group photo with VIPs visiting the #mydigitalmaker hub.