KUALA LUMPUR, 14 November 2017 – The 7th World Engineering Education Forum (WEEF) 2017 saw more than 500 industry players, educators, researchers, and various stakeholders from 35 countries participate in the event.
The WEEF 2017 is hosted by the Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia, the International Federation of Engineering Education Societies (IFEES), the Society of Engineering Education Malaysia (SEEM) and UTM in collaboration with the Malaysian Council of Engineering Deans.
The four days forum is held in conjunction with the 7th Regional Conference on Engineering Education & Research in Higher Education 2017 (RCEE & RHED 2017), the 1st international STEAM Education Conference (STEAMEC 2017) and the 4th Innovative Practices in Higher Education Expo 2017 (IPHEX 2017).
WEEF 2017 first keynote speaker was the Science Advisor to the Prime Minister, Prof. Emeritus Tan Sri Dr. Zakri Abdul Hamid highlighting Industrie 4.0 with his speech entitled Developing Future Human Capital in Emerging Economies for Industrie 4.0.
Renowned speakers for the two other keynote sessions are Prof. Dr. Anette Kolmos, Director of Aalborg UNESCO Centre for Problem-Based Learning in Engineering Science and Sustainability, Denmark and Dr. Martin Dougiamas, Founder and CEO of MOODLE Pty. Ltd., Australia.
Other notable speakers included Xavier Fouger from Dassault Systemes, France, Dr. Gatot Hari Priowirjanto, the Director of SEAMEO, President of Malaysia Board of Technologists, Tan Sri Datuk Ir. (Dr.) Ahmad Zaidee Laidin, Vice Chancellor of Universiti Teknologi Petronas, Datuk Ir. (Dr.) Abdul Rahim Hj. Hashim, Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic and International ) UTM, Professor Dr. Zainuddin Abdul Manan.
Paul Gilbert from Quanser, Canada, Dr. Michael Milligan from ABET, USA, Dr. Norman Fortenberry from the American Society of Engineering Education, Ken Dunstan from Mathworks, Australia Dr. Shahbaz Khan from UNESCO and many other world-renowned figures from various institutions and industries across the North and South America, Europe, Asia, Africa and Australia.
Keynote Speaker, Xavier Fouger said; “I believe that Everyone here must be familiar with PBL because we are all at WEEF, hosted by UTM which is the centre of development of PBL in Asia.”
Meanwhile, Vice Chancellor UTM, Professor Datuk Ir Dr Wahid Omar said, WEEF 2017 aims to inspire international level cooperation among participants and form a lasting community in engineering and STEM education.
“This is indeed a noble effort in bringing together experts from all over the world to gather and share novel ideas and work together in “the era of synergistic collaboration”, which is appropriately chosen as the theme of this important event.
“I am certain that this collaboration will make WEEF more vibrant and dynamic, creating more avenues to share ideas, insights and network in more effective ways towards better practice, innovative strategies, and impactful outcomes.”
He told guests at the WEEF 2017 dinner held at the Berjaya Times Square Hotel, tonight.
Present were Director-General, Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Education Datin Paduka Ir. Dr. Siti Hamisah Tapsir and Professor Dr. Zainuddin Abdul Manan.
Professor Wahid said, in the current challenging times and competitive environment people are facing, it is imperative that they rethink and reform their ways and approaches in preparing a future work force that is adaptable and able to compete globally.
The WEEF he said is timely held as a platform for forward-thinking participants from higher educational institutions, industries and other major stakeholders.
They come together to looking for constructive inputs and feedback in facilitating the transformation of our higher education in this challenging times.
“I am also happy to note that in conjunction with WEEF, there are various special pre and post workshops relating to 21st Century learning and industry 4.0 organised at UTM Kuala Lumpur.
“It is hoped that the workshops provide opportunities for knowledge sharing among participants towards better understanding of educational methodology, new teaching and learning strategies, improved performance and eventually best classroom practices,” he pointed out.
The Vice Chancellor said, they have made progress in addressing the educational needs, and improve student outcomes.
“But with new challenges emerging in the horizon, there is much more that needs to be done in revolutionizing education.
“They should play the role of solution providers and transformation drivers that meet the current and future needs while addressing the challenges,” he added.
He said, holistic curricula for academic programs at higher levels must be improved, taking into account the current changes and demands of the global arena, especially in effective teaching and learning.
“Research in higher education especially in Engineering and STEM education should aim to benefit society at large, and should not be left archived in journals on shelves.
“I believe that in the spirit of open discussion and collaborative efforts to solve mutual problems facing the world today, this forum will be a fruitful meeting of the minds that will ultimately lead to innovative ideas and recommendations.
“I hope that this forum will continue to be a platform to promote the paradigm shift and enhance collaboration, networking and continual exchange of ideas in a global environment to foster and enhance research in Engineering Education,” he said.