Saturday, May 5, 2007

MMU Collaborates with IBM to Innovate Students

CYBERJAYA, 22 May 2007 - Multimedia University (MMU), a long term partner of IBM Malaysia today further extended their partnership by signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to jointly work together under the IBM Academic Initiative Offering Agreement where IBM will provide MMU with the software development knowledge technology transfer programmes.

“This collaboration between MMU and IBM represents another significant milestone in educational co-operation between the two parties. At MMU, we recognize the importance of utilizing technological advances to fuel future growth for our next generation workforce. In order to narrow the information communications technology knowledge, business concepts and software development gap for students, contributions from a strong technology partner such as IBM would be necessary to help our students to start thinking in an innovative manner,” said Professor Datuk Ghauth Jasmon, President of Multimedia University.

Since 2003, MMU students have been learning DB2 for practical training as part of the university information technology course curriculum. The university is also using Rational for its lab teaching of software engineering course. As a member of IBM Academic Initiative, MMU will
benefit from IBM software licenses for at least 60 middleware products (including open source technology like Eclipse and CloudScape) and has remote access to IBM hardware like System z and Sytem i.

MMU has also undertaken to set up IBM Software Innovation Lab to support the teaching of IT technologies in the areas related to the IBM core business. The establishment of the Lab is aimed at providing the necessary support and resources to its students for their academic achievements and career development.

IBM software will be deployed to the IBM Software Innovation Lab in the University to support the teaching of IT technologies in the areas related to IBM core business like service orientated architecture, WebSphere Portal, Domino, Rational and DB2 Express for Community.

“We strive to be a world class university that pursues teaching and research in cutting edge and relevant fields of learning that harnesses state-of-the art information communication technologies to advance human civilization. Under this partnership, our students will be able to go for product certifications and hands-on pre-certification workshop sponsored by IBM. We want our graduates to be innovators of ideas and a catalyst of change in their fields of learning, in order to advance knowledge and seek solutions, with information communication technologies as a prime driving tool” Professor Datuk Ghauth Jasmon added.

MMU aims to contribute valuable human capital towards developing an information economy encouraging students to convert technology into
products and services - thus becoming a technology provider rather than a technology consumer. The faculty staff of MMU will also stand to benefit from this programme as they will be able to participate in IBM internship at the Company’s software research lab for industry exposure.

Recognizing one of MMU’s vision as ‘An innovator of ideas and a catalyst of change in our fields of learning’, Ou Shian Waei, Managing Director, IBM Malaysia at the signing ceremony said, “IBM seeks to incorporate innovation into practical learning. At IBM for example, ‘Innovation that matters for our company and for the world’ is one of our core values; we work to put this value into action every day to remain competitive as we create new technologies and services that make a difference for our clients around the globe.

We hope that our continuous and consistent effort in education initiatives will spur other businesses, community organisations, as well as universities themselves, to enable greater innovation in education.”

Also at the event, IBM presented scholarships to two students with disabilities who currently are undergoing their undergraduate studies at MMU.

One of the recipients, Selina Ooi Shin Ping is currently studying at the MMU Faculty of Creative Multimedia said, “I believe that disability should not be a hindrance to success. Working hard is the key to it and that is no exception even to the deaf or disabled community generally. I wish to see more universities and companies stepping out to help the deaf and disabled community. Given the opportunity, we are capable of working and we yearn to be successful in life too.”

Muhd Zuhdi Najib Bin Sabri Najib who is pursuing his bachelor degree in Information Technology Software said, “It is truly an honour to receive a scholarship from the leading IT company, IBM.” Since young, Zuhdi had always imagined himself working for IBM when he grows up. He laughed and said, “I’m quite sure I’m not the only person habouring such a dream. I hope IBM will continue to inspire others like how it has inspired me.” The two students received a mock cheque and confirmations of their scholarships at the ceremony.

“The grit and might of Zuhdi and Selina should be applauded and IBM is pleased to be able to assist them in obtaining their undergraduate qualifications. In line with the national agenda of equal opportunities to people with disabilities, IBM is committed to help realized this objective. People with disabilities are a key constituent within the targeted diversity groups in IBM world wide. The employees of IBM represent a talented and diverse workforce and achieving the full potential of this diversity is a business priority that is fundamental to the company. In fact, we invests heavily in the accessibility technologies to ensure people with disabilities are provided with the right assistance or tool to make them full productive members of society. Innovation in IBM is about making the world a better place for everyone,” said Ou.

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