PHOTO - Datuk Ir. Dr. Wee Ka Siong, Deputy Minister of Education (centre) witnessing the exchange of documents between Dr. Tan Chik Heok, principal of TARC (left) and Ramanathan Sathiamutty, managing director, IBM Malaysia (right) to signify the launch of the On Campus IBM Centre of Excellence.
Technology giant IBM and Malaysian institute of higher learning Tunku Abdul Rahman College (TARC) have launched an academic initiative to promote knowledge and skills development in software technology.
The signing of the agreement, which was witnessed by the Deputy Minister of Education, Datuk Ir. Dr Wee Ka Siong, took place at the on-campus Centre of Excellence for IBM Software at TARC on 19 July 2011.
TARC principal, Dr Tan Chik Heok, said: "We are pleased to broaden our partnership with IBM to add value and increase the number of local skilled computer science and software engineering graduates to contribute to the local and global ICT workforce."
Dr Tan said that under the collaboration, TARC would provide teaching resources and facilities, while IBM would provide software, courseware, training and testing necessary to gain IBM certification. "Students will be trained in IBM software technology, particularly DB2, Lotus, Rational and WebSphere capabilities. TARC is the first institution of higher learning in Malaysia to set up a centre of excellence for training in software technology."
He added that from 2012, students would be taught IBM Power Systems, including the IBM i operating environment and cloud computing capabilities in anticipation of the next wave of computing, as well as to bridge the skills gap in software and hardware technology.
Demand for skilled resources
"We recognise the need for more IT specialists as they are essential to any enterprise, but are hampered by the current lack of such skilled resources," said Dr Tan. "Responding to the demands of the market, and the increased requirement for research and development knowledge, the Centre of Excellence is being established with the aim of producing such graduates with the required knowledge, ability and analytical skills to plan and manage IT effectively through innovative learning process and practical teamwork."
Since early 2010, TARC and IBM have been working together to develop and spur greater growth of IT skilled resources in the college, according to IBM Malaysia managing director Ramanathan Sathiamutty. "The establishment of the Centre of Excellence will enable TARC to produce graduates with relevant IT knowledge and skills, to contribute to the creation of valuable work, locally and globally."
Sathiamutty said IBM would also help to identify its clients and business partners to collaborate with TARC for internships and employment of TARC graduates. So far, IBM has identified Scope International - Standard Chartered Bank's Group Global Technology and Operations Hub, Silverlake Axis, a leading banking and finance digital economy solutions and services provider, Dynafront, a leading life assurance solution provider, and Computer Business Solutions, IBM premier business partner specialising in IBM systems, for potential internships and employment of TARC graduates who have been certified.
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