Education News

Moving Forward and Thinking BIG

November 5, 2015 | Campus News
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Kuala Lumpur, 16 October 2015: In line with Multimedia Development Corporation (MDeC)’s strategic intent for Malaysia to be a hub for Big Data Analytics services by 2020, the Asia Pacific University of Technology & Innovation (APU) hosted its very own Big Data Week at its campus in APU, to create awareness among the APU community on the implementation of Big Data Analytics in various fields of study and business domains. This initiative by APU had attracted participation of various industry experts, such as MDeC, SAS, Microsoft, HTC Global Solutions, Maxis Mobile Services Sdn Bhd, HILTI Asia IT Services, Big Data Malaysia and Data Incubator and Data Streams, as they shared valuable knowledge related to Big Data to the community of APU staff and students, via workshops and talks which were held throughout the week.

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The event was officiated by Prof. Ron Edwards, Deputy Vice Chancellor of APU, alongside Ir. Dr. Karl Ng Kar Hou, Director of MDeC Innovation Capital. At the opening presentation, Prof. Dr. Ir. Vinesh Thiruchelvam, Dean of Faculty of Computing, Engineering and Technology (FCET), APU, introduced the efforts of APU in making its mark in the domains of Big Data. “The event was organised to create awareness to the APU community about Big Data. We are committed to the National interest in producing Data Professionals. Our current undergraduate programmes have been equipped with curriculum content to develop graduates fit to undertake data analytical challenges.” said Prof. Dr. Ir. Vinesh. At the same time, APU will be the first private university in Malaysia to offer the MSc in Data Science & Business Analytics, The curriculum was jointly developed with SAS, the leader in analytics, whereby students, teachers and researchers will be equipped with the latest in Business Intelligence and Analytics (BIA) knowledge and tools. Upon completion, students will receive a joint certification from SAS which will greatly enhance their employability. Andrew Tan, Managing Director of SAS Malaysia said, “This collaboration is aimed at producing world-class analytics talent in line with the rapidly-growing market demand. We are honored to be working with a visionary university such as APU towards realizing the nation’s big data goals.”

Dr. Karl Ng said, “Malaysia is ready to embrace the vast opportunities that Big Data Analytics (BDA) has to offer. We applaud APU’s efforts in leading the way among Malaysian Institutions of Higher Learning to play a key role in developing the BDA talent ecosystem. This will undoubtedly play a big role in achieving our vision of having 1,500 local data scientists by 2020 and accelerate Malaysia’s vision of being the BDA hub in the region.”

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The Big Data Week also played host to the launch of the Asia Pacific Centre of Analytics (APCA), a committee which comprises lecturers and students from various disciplines, to develop skills sets pertaining to the Data Scientist profession and to establish APU as a centre for industry-based analytical research. The team, chaired by Hema Latha Krishna Nair, will be involved in establishments of industry links, research activities, consultancy and training in the Big Data Analytics (BDA) field.

The week demonstrated a huge leap in the university’s efforts to maximize the utilization of Big Data in various areas. “Through this event, APU has brought together leading industry experts, analysts, practitioners and solution providers to deliver a world-class educational program to help students build, manage and grow data infrastructure, teams and practice today, so they can remain competitive tomorrow,” said Mr Ragunathan Gopalakrishnan, Head of Data Architect, Maxis Mobile Services Sdn Bhd. Meanwhile, Dr. Martin Nemetz, Managing Director at Hilti Asia IT Services, also expressed his interest to “witness the successful development of Data Scientists in Malaysia to work in all aspects of professional industries, through continuous collaboration with APU.”

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