UTAR and Hume Cement Sdn Bhd officially inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) at UTAR Kampar Campus on 4 May 2016 to mark a new chapter of industry collaboration.
Representing UTAR at the signing ceremony were UTAR President, Ir Prof Academician Dato’ Dr Chuah Hean Teik and UTAR Vice President for R&D and Commercialisation, Prof Ir Dr Lee Sze Wei; while signing on behalf of Hume Cement Sdn Bhd were Hume Cement General Manager, Joonho Choi and Hume Industries Berhad (HIB) Head of Human Resources, Adam Tan Lee Yee.
Other guests from Hume included Hume Concrete Products Research Centre Sdn Bhd Senior Manager for Research and Development, Ng Kah Seng and Manager for Quality Control, Chan Yew Lai. Also present at the signing ceremony were UTAR Faculty of Engineering and Green Technology (FEGT) Dean Dr Yap Vooi Voon, FEGT Deputy Dean for R&D and Postgraduate Programmes Dr Lo Po Kim, FEGT Deputy Dean for Academic and Undergraduate Programmes Dr Ng Choon Aun, FEGT Deputy Dean for Student Development and Industrial Training Dr Tan Kok Tat, FEGT Head of Department of Construction Management Dr Wai Soon Han, and SHL Professor of Construction Management Professorial Chair Prof Dr Naoto Mine.
Aimed to boost the collaboration between the two organisations, the MoU will not only unlock opportunities for student internship and consultancy projects, but also channel immense experience from the industry into the university’s engineering syllabi. “This will allow us to introduce some elective courses and revise our syllabi so that our students are more exposed to the needs of the industry,” said Prof Chuah, and added that the main function of a university is to produce knowledge workers who fit into the industry. Envisioning how UTAR graduates can further contribute to the industry, society, and humanity, Prof Chuah stressed that industry collaboration is no longer seen as a luxury but a necessity. “The MoU also promotes mutual learning between the academia and the industry because by learning from each other, the academics will also understand the industry needs and educate students more effectively.”
Prof Chuah welcoming the guests from Hume Cement
Speaking from the industry’s perspective in achieving a win-win situation, Choi is hopeful that the MoU will be a talent magnet. “The search for talents to enrich the industry and workforce has led us to work with UTAR. The collaboration also allows the students to see the cement industry in a different perspective,” explained Choi, who also mentioned that Hume Cement is member of the Hong Leong Group which has core businesses ranging from Banking and Financial Services, to Manufacturing and Distribution. “Under HIB and the Hong Leong Manufacturing Group, there is a ‘Rotation Programme’ which also allows UTAR students joining Hume Cement to explore job opportunities in other sectors besides the cement industry,” he concluded.
Choi expressing his delight to be working with UTAR
The ceremony reached its highlight with the dignitaries signing the MoU documents and ended with a souvenir presentation.
Prof Chuah (second from right) and Choi (second from left) shook hands while Tan (left) and Prof Lee (right) look on
Prof Chuah explaining the milestones and campuses of UTAR during the tour of the UTAR Gallery
The guests from Hume Cement were later introduced to some of FEGT’s well-resourced laboratories such as the Construction Management Lab, the Environmental Lab and the Petrochemical Lab during a campus tour accompanied by FEGT staff.
The guests visiting the FEGT labs
The MoU with Hume Cement is the latest addition to the existing 217 MoUs and Memorandums of Agreement signed over the past 14 years, propelling UTAR towards its vision as a global university of educational excellence with transformative societal impact.
Prior collaborative projects with Hume included student internships at Hume Cement plants, exchange and sharing of testing equipment to achieve common goal towards R&D excellence and other initiatives.