Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Choosing the Right Path

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The other day I was talking to my cousin, who is a bio-chemical engineering graduate and she was telling me how her job now sucks. She works at a shipping company across the Causeway and often wondered how she studied so much but ended up doing something completely different. Don't get me wrong, many people study something else in college but enter a different field after they graduate and it is quite normal to experience that.But the thing is, this cousin of mine, she is actually interested and very much in love with bio-chemical engineering - just that she hasn't had any luck in landing the job that she wanted and gave up trying when there was an opportunity for her to work else where.

So I brought her along for the Sector Focused Career Fair (SFCF) recently held at Univeriti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) in Skudai. It is a two-day (on Dec 4 & 5) career awareness fair dedicated to facilitate awareness among the public on the choices of career paths available in the 11 National Key Economic Area (NKEA) sectors organised by Talent Corporation Malaysia Berhad.

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It is an initiative by TalentCorp and UTM in efforts to also educate the public especially the university students on the opportunity that exist in the showcased sectors namely Oil & Gas, Electronics & Electrical, Information Technology (IT), Telecommunication, Biotechnology, Finance, Accounting, Healthcare, Tourism, FMCG and Education.

The SFCF this time round focused on the engineering sector and there were about 40 sector-related companies setting up their booths at the fair such as Sunway Group, UMW Toyota Sdn Bhd, Honda Malaysia Sdn Bhd and Frost and Sullivan. Not only that, there were also walk-in interviews, seminars, a forum and quizzes for visitors to participate in.

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According to UTM’s deputy vice-chancellor for alumni and student affairs Prof Dr Mohd Ismail Abdul Aziz, UTM produces at least 2,500 engineering students a year, making up 60% of the higher education institute’s student enrolment. “The seminar and interactions let students gain more understanding and knowledge about their job prospect and industry requirement,” he said.

Engineering is a vast sector with numerous exciting career opportunities, said TalentCorp CEO Johan Mahmood Merican. He added that the SFCF was a great example of the public and private sectors coming together to intensive their talent development efforts.

The SCFC also provides an opportunity for graduates to meet with CEOs ad senior HR representatives of participating companies while providing a platform for companies to scout from universities in Malaysia. Several critical industries are in need of top talent and the undergraduates are able to use this opportunity to better understand these sectors in Malaysia. Not only that, through the fair, the companies have the opportunity to educate the public about industry developments, sectored branding and increase understanding of the Engineering industry.

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I think it is a very informative fair because these are real industry players where visitors can talk to in order to learn more about their field of study. My cousin was telling me that she wished she had such opportunities to explore the industry better while she was studying at UKM two years ago. Students should not miss out of future opportunities to explore such fairs!

For more info and upcoming events, check out SFCF’s Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/SectorFocusedCareerFairSFCF

Hope this helps in looking for the right career path!

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