Digital skills in the era of IR4.0 and global pandemic disruption
In the face of the disruption caused by the coronavirus pandemic, policymakers, scientists, medical staff, and IT and data specialists are inundated with terabytes of pandemic and case history data.
As a result, they are now faced with the demanding task of analyzing big data for policy formulation, decision making, forecasting and management of future epidemics.
Fortunately, new wave technologies such as IR4.0 (4th Industrial Revolution) that include data analytics, AI, and smart and connected devices have come to the rescue to manage the pandemic disruption at scale. global.
At the same time, there is now more than ever a critical need for skilled resources to manage this often complex and interconnected network of systems and data.
In theory, we will soon see technologies integrated and allowing medical workers to communicate more effectively with each other – for rapid decisions and interventions with less human physical dependence to save more lives.
Quoting the national policy âIndustry4WRDâ of the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI), âIndustry Revolution 4.0 (IR4.0) blurs the distinction between physical, digital and biological spaces. “(Â¹)
Digital skills in demand
Today’s dynamic and disruptive environment demands that those involved are equipped with the know-how, knowledge and skills to implement and manage the relevant elements, as it embodies advanced knowledge on data integration, intelligence artificial, machines and communication.
According to the World Economic Forum‘s Future of Jobs report, 50% of all employees will need to be retrained by 2025. (Â²)
Therefore, it is expected that the retraining and development budgets of businesses and organizations will likely increase to fill the skills gap.
In addition, future graduates should be endowed with a qualification incorporating sustainable and employable skills that will serve them competently within their organizations and also contribute to society and the nation when needed.
LinkedIn – the world’s largest professional network on the Internet – predicts that there will be 150 million new technology jobs globally over the next five years.Â³)
In addition to this, the Malaysia Digital Economy Blueprint 2021 highlighted that the digital economy will become the foundation of the modern economy (â´), thus requiring a skilled workforce to fulfill this national mandate.
Pathway to acquire digital skills
Leading the digital transformation for higher education, all academic programs offered by the Asia-Pacific University of Technology and Innovation (APU) focus on technology across fields, leveraging the Internet of Things (IoT), data science, cybersecurity, cloud computing, artificial intelligence (AI), mechatronics, e-commerce, digital marketing, virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), digital leadership, financial technology (FinTech) and mobile technology.
For professionals and working organizations, personalized retraining and development programs are offered.
This strategy is largely in response to the increased demand for technology and innovation, driven by the new challenges people face as part of the new normal in the time of Covid-19. It encompasses innovative teaching and learning using state-of-the-art infrastructure, revolutionary programs for the future, industry-university partnership and professional development with a global perspective.
To enable students to gain hands-on experiences, APU is equipped with world-class infrastructure sourced from the United States, France, Singapore, Germany, and the United Kingdom.
The campus-based APU industry exposes students, staff and training participants to a simulated work environment, real-time data and scenarios, and real-time challenges. Some of APU’s major industrial partners include TechForte, Ministry XR, IBM, SAS, TIBCO, and Microsoft.
One such industry campus facility is the Cyber ââSecurity Talent Zone (CSTZ) – Malaysia’s first integrated cybersecurity talent zone. CSTZ houses military-grade real-time cybersecurity monitoring software in the full-fledged Cyber ââThreat Simulation and Response Center (cyber range) and Security Operations Center (SOC), where students can adopt and experience an industrial or professional work environment, to develop as competent technology professionals in a real environment. Here they are able to hone their skills to identify, recognize and mitigate cybersecurity risks.
In a one-of-a-kind collaboration with industry, APU established the first XR studio unique in Asia and among Malaysian universities in collaboration with Ministry XR.
The state-of-the-art studio includes technology, hardware and software capable of developing AR, VR and Mixed Reality (MR) applications. Students gain hands-on experience in the development of industry-related projects involving computer game development, multimedia technology, engineering, animation, and visual effects programs.
State-of-the-art technological infrastructure, on-campus industry, and experienced speakers and industry professionals have formed a successful ecosystem that has helped develop future-proof and employable professionals.
According to the latest annual survey of graduates from the Ministry of Higher Education, 100% of APU graduates were employed after graduation.
APU is on track to train highly sought-after graduates with easily employable digital skills and provide development and retraining opportunities for working professionals.