Fresh perspectives for business community

Lai (second from left) shaking hands with Prof Lee after signing the MOU. Looking on are Assoc Prof Toh (right) and Tai (left). — Photos: CHAN BOON KAI/The Star

TUNKU Abdul Rahman University of Management and Technology (TAR UMT) signed a five-year memorandum of understanding with E Team International Sdn Bhd to exchange knowledge and best practices.

The company’s The Entrepreneur Magazine has committed to offer internship and scholarship opportunities to the university’s students, as well as share technical expertise and experience.

The university will encourage its students to take up those opportunities while also having the magazine’s personnel over for regular talks, seminars and career fairs.

Both parties are also set to collaborate on the production of six videos featuring dialogues between entrepreneurs and young professionals to be released in December.

This series will delve into challenges faced by fresh graduates in the modern workplace such as adapting to job culture and dealing with increased competition.

It will also explore opportunities for personal growth and give young professionals practical career guidance.

The MOU was signed by TAR UMT president Prof Dr Lee Sze Wei and E Team International managing director Lai Wai Chee at TAR UMT’s Penang branch.

Witnessing the ceremony was the institution’s branch head Assoc Prof Dr Janice Toh, magazine director Tai Poh Yan and 30 representatives from local small-medium enterprises (SMEs).

Chin delivering his keynote address during the MOU signing ceremony.Chin delivering his keynote address during the MOU signing ceremony.

Prof Lee believed such partnerships could bring fresh perspectives to Malaysia’s business landscape and open up new possibilities for the business community.

He said TAR UMT currently had about 30,000 students in its six campuses with the one in Penang having 4,000 and the number is rising.

“We play an important role in developing talent not just for the northern region but Malaysia as a whole.

“The employability of our graduates is among the highest in the country.

“Working together with key industry players will help create more job opportunities for our graduates and also spur economic growth,” said Prof Lee.

Lai said closer ties between academia and industries would also increase the competitiveness of SMEs which, according to latest figures, make up around 98% of all Malaysian businesses, generate 38% of the country’s gross domestic product and employ over seven million people.

It is a sector the magazine has championed since its debut in 2001.

It shines a spotlight on homegrown brands and the visionaries at their helms.

The signing ceremony doubled up as a sharing session called “ESG Solutions for SMEs”.

The “Environment, Social and Governance” framework sets standards on how an organisation is run with regards to the planet and its people.

Assoc Prof Toh said, “We understand that the SME landscape is in need of actionable insights so that’s why we’ve brought together experts and thought leaders to not just offer theoretical advice but also real-world strategies that companies can embed into their DNA.”

Universiti Sains Malaysia economic sociology professor Dr Joshua Chin Yee Whah delivered the keynote address on “Customised ESG Adoption for Malaysian SMEs”.

He highlighted how ESG added value to companies and increased productivity and efficiency.

Attendees were also taken on a tour of the sprawling campus before the event ended with a networking lunch.

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