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Assalamualaikum Warahmatullahi
Wabarokatuh and
A very good evening I bid to

  1. Let us all be grateful that by the grace of Allah Subhanu Wa Taala, we are able to gather here today to witness the MOU signing ceremony between Microsoft Malaysia with the Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia (MOHE) and Talent Corporation Malaysia Berhad. This occasion also marks the official launch of the Talent in Tech Accelerator Nationwide Programme. I'm truly privileged to be here before all of you, and I want to extend a special and warm greeting to our distinguished guests.
  1. I also would like to thank the organizer for inviting me to officiate this significant event.

Ladies and Gentlemen;

  1. Let me start by asking a question – What does holistic education mean in the digital world we live in today? Children are now born into a tech-first world as “digital natives”; where all the knowledge in the world is at the tips of their fingers and where technology is the focal point for how our society lives, works, and plays.
  1. As educators, we strive to nurture our nation’s youth to be dynamic and high-valued talent in an ever-evolving job market. But the reality when it comes to higher education is ultimately employment. It is a financial and time investment that is intended to enhance the attractiveness of our talent, bracing them for the future of work and employment.
  1. In fact, Mr. Raman highlighted some pertinent points earlier from Microsoft’s Work Trend Index on the future of work. One thing that really stood out for me is the digital skills needed in the AI era – which brings us to today’s initiative.
  1. As technology continues to be a key thrust area for business and our national economy, digital skills, and competencies will be crucial to maintaining the value of our talent in the digital future.
  1. To ensure our talent is future-ready, we need to re-evaluate and approach skills development strategically, partnering with organizations like Microsoft to ensure we are identifying and nurturing the most in-demand skills for the future.
  1. The launch of the Talent in Tech Accelerator Program today represents an important step forward in this regard. MOHE has appointed Universiti Tun Hussein Onn Malaysia (UTHM) as the focal university responsible for coordinating this program's implementation. By bringing together both public and private sectors, we can leverage the expertise of both veteran educators and technology experts to deliver meaningful training.
  1. Next week, 1,000 final-year students from 20 public universities will be undergoing a 2-week hybrid boot camp as part of the pilot program and they will be rewarded with Microsoft’s globally accredited and renowned certification upon successfully completing this program. After which they will be matched with in demand industry roles with leading organisations in Malaysia, paving a way for them to enhance their career opportunities, while further contributing to Malaysia’s digital economy.
  1. We commend Microsoft’s approach via the Bersama Malaysia campaign, as Mr. Raman had mentioned earlier, to drive the adoption of not only in-demand technology, but to equip talent with digital skills in-line with these technologies to ensure the creation of an inclusive digital economy.
  1. We are also inspired by Microsoft’s achievement thus far in supporting the growth of our nation’s talent. From the setting up of the Microsoft for Startups Founders Hub alongside Cradle, to their commitment to upskilling 1 million Malaysians by end of 2023, under the Bersama Malaysia initiative announced in 2021, collaborations of this nature is critical to ensure we are able to upskill everyone, and leave no one behind in our journey towards the future. Indeed, this is commendable, and I understand that to date, Microsoft has already achieved close to 90% of its target. Tahniah!
  1. On the other end, this program also furthers our goal at MOHE under the Pelan Strategik Pendigitalan Kementerian Pendidikan Tinggi (Malaysian Higher Education Digitalization Strategic Plan (2021 – 2025)). In addition to being aligned with the Malaysia Digital Economy Blueprint, our Strategic Plan encompasses four key thrust areas – key among which is the enhancement of digital competencies and an adoption of a digital culture among tertiary education institutions and students.
  1. We hope the collaboration today acts as a beacon to inspire more of such collaboration between the technology and education sectors, thus driving the digital culture at an early stage among students which they can then bring forward into the workplace and be the changemakers and innovators that can effectively accelerate digitalization in our country.
  1. Hence, today’s MoU with Microsoft Malaysia is another important step in the holistic effort by the Malaysian Government to involve all relevant stakeholders in the effort to achieve national goals.

Ladies and Gentleman

  1. I asked at the start of my address – what defines a holistic education. The answer to this will always change, but at its core, education is intended to prepare our youth for the future.
  1. But I must also emphasize that learning does not end at university – indeed, the saying that learning is a lifelong journey is more true today than it ever was before.
  1. As such, I am confident that more collaborations like this will appear in the future, as newer and more advanced skills are needed – and what we are doing today will set the groundwork for the future of education and skills development for our nation’s graduate.
  1. With that, I once again congratulate for this effort and wish all parties the very best.

Thank you. Assalamualaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh.

Muat Turun:

pdf Deputy Minister's Speech MOU KPT Microsoft.pdf (176 KB)

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