Addressing the bigger picture
STUDENTS who love challenging themselves should consider pursuing engineering at premier choice university Multimedia University ( MMU).
Prof Dr Ahmad Rafi Mohamed Eshaq, president of MMU, says, “Engineering has advanced humanity and enabled us to irrigate and work lands to overcome food shortages, build strong shelters to save us from predators and the elements as well as raise monuments to celebrate and respect our cultures and identities.”
In this day and age, the world needs engineers more than ever and faces challenges that could spell catastrophe if not addressed – these are known as the 14 Grand Challenges of Engineering.
The challenges are to make solar energy economical, provide energy from fusion, develop carbon sequestration methods, manage the nitrogen cycle, provide access to clean water, restore and improve urban infrastructure, advance health informatics, engineer better medicines, reverse engineer the brain, prevent nuclear terror, secure cyberspace, enhance virtual reality, advance personalised learning and engineer tools for scientific discovery.
Prof Rafi says that although solving each problem is an enormous feat, the solution lies in the concerted efforts of people addressing these challenges rather than individual effort.
MMU is recognised worldwide for its engineering programmes. The university has been listed in Quacquarelli Symonds’ ( QS) World University Rankings by Subject 2015 as a Top 200 University for electrical and electronics engineering, computer science and information systems in 2014 and communication and media studies in 2012.
Prof Rafi is confident that MMU students and graduates can play a big role in solving the 14 Grand Challenges through the engineering courses.
“We have all the essentials – mechanical engineering, electronics, telecommunications and even nanotechnology, all of which play a crucial role in making impact,” he says.
For example, the challenge of developing and advancing personalised learning is one that can be possibly solved.
Currently, teaching is mostly done using the classroom method. This style involves having a teacher or lecturer teaching in front of students.
Yet, for many students, this conventional style is not engaging. As a result, they lose interest and do poorly academically. Ultimately, these students suffer all sorts of repercussions, including economic and professional ones.
With a good personalised learning system, students’ strengths and weaknesses will be identified and the best learning strategy evaluated. Based on these findings, students can receive instructions on how to use the methods that best engage them, ensuring they do not lose interest.
If personalised learning can be realised, it will be an important human achievement because it will make schools more interesting and students will get a clearer idea of the career they would like to pursue.
With MMU’s strong engineering culture, Prof Rafi is also confident that MMU is uniquely positioned to give its students a head start in solving the 14 Grand Challenges.
“Many of the challenges involve connectivity, communication skills and resources. Given that the university’s parent is Telekom Malaysia, future engineering students will gain a distinct advantage by studying in MMU. Once you give yourself a good head start, you stand a better chance of making significant contributions,” says Prof Rafi.
MMU offers special rebates and scholarships for students who enrol in the April intake as part of its 20th anniversary
For more information, visit www. mmu. edu. my or call 1300 800 668.
Innovative and savvy engineers are needed in this day and age to address the 14 Grand Challenges of Engineering.
Prof Dr Ahmad Rafi Mohamed Eshaq.