Three Miri teams make it to Young Innovate Malaysia 2016

Luak Team 2.0 with their ‘Automatic Buggy System’.

Luak Team 2.0 with their ‘Automatic Buggy System’.

closer look at the ‘Automatic Buggy System’.

A closer look at the ‘Automatic Buggy System’.

MIRI: The teams from SMK Luak, SMK St Joseph and SMK Merbau are the participants from here who are representing the state at the ‘Young Innovate Malaysia 2016’ in Kuala Lumpur yesterday and today – one of the events run during the annual Kuala Lumpur Engineering Science Fair (KLESF).

Young Innovate Malaysia is a national-level science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM)-based design competition open to students of secondary schools across the country. Its primary objective is to inspire students’ passion in STEM, while developing their living skills and exposing them to open-sourced hardware and software.

Qualifiers are selected at the annual regional-level ‘Young Innovate’ competitions. In the case of ‘Young Innovate Miri’, the qualifying round was hosted by Curtin University Sarawak here on Oct 8, where the three emerged tops among 24 teams from 12 secondary schools across this division.

Representing SMK Luak with their ‘Automatic Buggy System’ project for the Kuala Lumpur outing are members of ‘Luak Team 2.0’ comprising Yeo Yii Yun, Nurul Afiqah Nor Arizal and Nor Badiriah Napisa. Their buggy system helps air travellers with physical disabilities navigate and move around airports more easily.

Members of SMK St Joseph’s ‘Graphite Atoms’ McLaren Ludan Bada, Kevin Ruly Andrew and Malcolm Ling Essa are showcasing their ‘Repelly’ (Ultrasound Insect Repeller) – a compact, eco-friendly device that uses ultrasound to repel insects.

Meanwhile, Avesha Veronica Law and Soon Ee Ying of SMK Merbau’s ‘Team Alpha’ hope to shine through their ‘Water Flow Sensor’, which tackles the issue of household water wastage.

The sensor detects how much water is used and will set off an alarm when users exceed the normal daily usage.

All three projects received rave reviews from the judges – Ayisha Arshad of Shell Malaysia, Sabatini Jihob of Sarawak Bumiputeras Technical Education Promotion Charitable Trust (Tegas), Siti Aisyah Zakaria of IM4U Outreach, and Mohamad Zulfadli Amin of Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDeC) – at this year’s ‘Young Innovate Miri’.

Ayisha said the creativity and innovation shown by the students had exceeded her expectations, adding that their ability to articulate their projects and the quality of their prototypes spoke volumes of their involvement and passion.

The state ‘Young Innovate’ – formerly known as ‘SAINS on Wheels – Tech Mentor Sarawak’ programme – is a community programme run by Curtin Malaysia’s Leadership and Entrepreneurship Centre (LEC) and Curtin Malaysia Institute of Electronic and Electrical Engineers (IEEE) Students Chapter, with support from its Faculty of Engineering and Science.

The programme is made possible by the university’s partnership with industry partners such as Dreamcatcher, Chumbaka, and also government agencies like Tegas, Sarawak Energy Bhd and iM4U.

Launched in 2013, it has reached out to more than 3,000 youths in Sarawak since.

Last year, five school teams from Miri represented Sarawak for the first time at the KLESF, bagging gold and bronze medals and in doing so, earned a spot at the ‘Young Innovate Malaysia’ finals in Penang.

St Joseph students receive their prize from LEC representative Haslina Malek
(left) at the ‘Young Innovate Miri’.

SMK St Joseph students receive their prize from LEC representative Haslina Malek (left) at the ‘Young Innovate Miri’.