The Star Malaysia - Star2
Reward for innovation
OVER two decades since the Electrical and Electronics (EE) sector first took off, its growth is moving into a new direction; focusing on innovation and design.
Recently, Nilai University students Yaiesh Musthafa and Pheshant Sri Nagesh Sivasamboo won a bronze medal in a competition to pitch and showcase their innovative final-year projects. Both students are in the Bachelor of Electrical and Electronics Engineering with Honours programme.
Yaiesh, an international student from the Maldives, had lecturers who supported and guided him to develop a prototype auto-parking car.
“There’s an embedded system integrating three different micro-controllers. Basically, the system would gather signals from a few sensors installed and transmit the information to the main controller that calculates and adjusts the algorithm for parking.
“This built-in system has a safety feature and will manoeuvre on its own to park,” said Yaeish.
Yaiesh’s uncle, a pilot, heard about Nilai University from his colleagues and encouraged Yaiesh to find out further about it. Yaiesh received sponsorship from his employer, a government-linked authority in the Maldives, to complete his Bachelor of Electrical and Electronics Engineering with Honours at Nilai University.
On the other hand, Pheshant was just 16 years old when he enrolled for foundation studies at Nilai University. He submitted his final-year project – a solar-based water pump.
“This water pump runs for 24 hours even though it is powered by solar energy. I have installed batteries in this prototype so that the pump can operate smoothly for 24 hours under rain or shine. The idea came about after several brainstorming sessions with my lecturers,” said Pheshant.
“Living in the outskirts and close to nature should never be a deterring factor. For example, with this water pump machine, rural communities need not travel hundreds of miles daily and carry heavy buckets of water home. This water pump system could be connected directly to their homes or a central community centre,” declared Dr Habibah Zulkefle, a senior lecturer.
Dr Nurul Shahrizan Shahabuddin, another senior lecturer specialising in Photonics, added that cost was another element being considered adding, “Also, while developing this final-year project, students learned to evaluate all variants such as the water flow, velocity, volume and other considerations.”
Gaining more than a medal
“Engineers are problem solvers and we train students to look at all variables. They need to be precise and accurate,” said Dr Nurul.
Besides learning and having the adventure to explore further engineering concepts, Pheshant and Yaeish also brushed up their presentation skills and summoned the courage to manage the pressures of public speaking.
School of Engineering and Technology head, Zairul Amri Zakaria, highlighted there are three different fundamental programmes in Engineering offered at Nilai University – Diploma In Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Diploma In Mechatronic Engineering and Diploma In Mechanical Engineering.
Students interested in engineering can specialise in one of these areas. Still, they should gain a sound footing either by enrolling in the Foundation in Science ora Diploma before pursuing a degree programme. Students can expect to finish in two and a half years and then decide to join the workforce or continue with a degree.
Dr Nurul and Dr Habibah commented that students passionate about engineering have curious and inquisitive minds.
Still, like all passion, it fizzles without dedication, hard work and commitment.
“To move forward, students should develop the tenacity to solve problems,” Dr Nurul pointed out.
Be prepared and upscale your talent in Engineering. The basic entry requirements for students who have just completed their tertiary exams are:
– SPM/SPMV/O-levels: 3Cs in Mathematics and a Science/ technical/vocational subject.
– UEC: 3Bs in Mathematics and a Science/ technical/vocational subject.
Obtaining a passing grade in English is also a requirement.
“Students should have a good footing in Maths, Add Maths and Physics,” Dr Habibah emphasised.
Ease of acquiring the right tertiary qualifications
Nilai University offers six types of scholarships. Under these awards, students will receive tuition fee waivers up to 100%. Pheshant, a gifted international squash player, received a scholarship under the Extracurriculum and Sports Excellence Award (ECSEA) to pursue his Foundation in Science.
Education counsellors at Nilai University will help to guide in the application of the scholarships.
■ Call 06-850 2308 for an appointment or email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit Nilai University’s Facebook page at https://www. facebook.com/NilaiUniversity/ or website at www.nilai.edu.my
The next intake will be in January 2020. Enquire today to learn more about the diploma programmes offered under the School of Engineering and Technology.