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A programme specially tailored for di erently abled youths, Diveheart 2018, was held 21-22 August at UMT Nature Research Station, Bidong Island, to help boost their con dence through scuba diving.

This two-day programme was organized in collaboration with a few other organisations, namely Diveheart Malaysia, Universiti Malaya Medical Centre, and Kids Scuba.

The objective of the programme was to provide the di erently abled who were into scuba diving the opportunity to experience what it was like to be scuba diving in the open water.

“Being di erently abled shouldn’t prevent ones from diving underwater to witness God-created wonders at the bottom of the sea,”said programme director Baharim Mustapha.

The programme was hoped to be the starting point for the di erently abled to make water activities such as scuba diving a form of recreation and therapy to boost the con dence and the sense of independence without feeling inferior.

“We wanted to instil into them the Yes-I-Can attitude,” he said.

Participants who joined the programme were from every category of di erent ability, including vision impairment, hearing impairment, and

congenital amputation. It was not their rst time taking part in scuba diving, as last year, they were brought to UMT to be trained by UMT professional divers in scuba diving at the campus swimming pool.

While at Bidong Island, the participants received assistance and support from UMT professional certi ed divers, who were the rst group of divers from Malaysia to be certi ed by Diveheart organisation as Diveheart Adaptive Diver Buddy Team. They were certi ed in 2017.

Also embedded into the programme was open-water scuba licensing course, which was attended by ve di erently abled divers.

“This is the rst time such arrangement has ever been done, whether in Malaysia or Asia, for that matter,” said Baharim, referring to the scuba licensing course.

He also said that it was a quite a challenge to be organizing an event such as Diveheart 2018, where the participants were of di erent ability, and there was always a risk with activities involving water.

“We had to consider every possible issue” he added.

But in the end, he said, what truly mattered was that these special people were able to experience something new in their lives, previously thought impossible given their shortcomings.

Source - riz@umt.edu.my


A signing of a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with two private companies took place on 9 October at The Majestic Hotel Kuala Lumpur, which resulted in UMT research fund instantly growing by almost a million ringgit.

The MOA between UMT and the two companies, Rentas Saga Sdn Bhd and Era Flow (M) Sdn Bhd, will see UMT’s Institute of Tropical Aquaculture (AKUATROP) receive nancial support to conduct research for several years to come.

This collaboration was made as part of an e ort to help AKUATROP receive the certi cation as a higher institution centre of excellence (HICoE) from the Ministry of Higher Education.

“Our niche area is marine sciences and aquatic resources. Hence, we wish to improve the image of AKUATROP as the centre of reference on aquaculture in the region.

Also, we intend to improve our rating for MyRA, through co-publishing with people in the industry and securing research grants. This MOA is one of our platforms,” said UMT Vice Chancellor Professor Dato’ Dr Nor Aieni Mokhtar.

Earlier, Professor Nor Aieni signed the MOA on behalf of AKUATROP and UMT.

The agreement calls for AKUATROP to conduct research with Rentas Saga Sdn Bhd on the application of Bio oc technology in the farming of salt water prawns. Rentas Saga will provide the research fund totalling RM211,000 for the three-year project, to be led by UMT researcher Dr Nor Azman Kasan.

The agreement also calls for AKUATROP to conduct research with Era Flow (M) Sdn Bhd, a subsidiary company of Rentas Saga Sdn Bhd, on developing quality species of salt water prawns. Era Flow will provide research fund totalling RM682,745 for the seven-year project, to be led by UMT researcher Dr Li Lian Wong.

Signing of behalf of Rentas Saga and Era Flow was Mr Abdul Ha z Abdullah, Chief Executive O cer of the two companies.

Also taking place at the signing ceremony was the presentation of a mock cheque totalling RM120,000 from Betsol Sdn Bhd to UMT, to represent the transfer of private research fund from the former to the latter. Through the fund, UMT will conduct research on the development of aquatic food formula based on insect protein, to be completed within two years. The research will be led by UMT researcher Dr Liew Hon Jung.

Source - muna @umt.edu.my


The ENACTUS team of Universiti Malaysia Terengganu, ENACTUS UMT, represented Malaysia in ENACTUS World Cup 2018 competition from 9-11 October in San Jose, California, after winning the national competition earlier this year in July.

This was the rst time the team had made it to this level after having participated in the national competition each year.

The team, comprising ten students and two faculty advisors, competed with 35 teams from other countries in hopes of taking home the championship.

In the opening round, the team was placed in League 1 with teams from Nigeria, Egypt, Mexico, Netherlands, and Guatamela. UMT team came in third, behind teams from Nigeria and Egypt, who advanced to the semi nal round representing the top two from League 1.

The team was given the competition-standard 17 minutes to present, for which the team highlighted project POLLEN.

POLLEN was a project that focused on helping farmers of local fruit sweet melon increase their crop yield by changing the pollination method from the manual hand cross-pollination to natural pollination using the stingless bees, known locally as lebah kelulut, as pollination agents.

Four farmers harvested close to 120000 units of high quality sweet melons and increased their net pro t to RM1.33 million within a year, representing an increase from 104% to 474% on return on investment.

While the team failed to advance to the semi nal round, they spoke highly of the experience they got even by just being there.

Siti Noornazihah Zulki i, project leader, said that she gained valuable experience seeing how other projects from di erent countries had helped their communities.

She said that although the team did not make it to the nal, they were happy regardless.

“We have achieved beyond what we expected, and we appreciate each other because we did it and we know how di cult it was to make it happen,” she said.

The four teams competing in the nal round were from Canada, Egypt, India, and Morocco, with the team from Canada announced champion at the end of the competition.

ENACTUS World Cup is an annual event organized by ENACTUS and held in San Jose, California, that brings together winning teams from participating countries to compete for the world championship.

ENACTUS is an international non-pro t, non-governmental organization headquartered in Spring eld, Missouri, with 72000 student members from 36 countries including Malaysia. The group is dedicated to creating business prospects for third parties through student group projects.

ENACTUS is derived from partial combination of the words, Entrepreneurs, Action, Us.

ENACTUS UMT came into form in 2008, has 185 student members and ve faculty advisors currently, and has been actively involved in various community projects.

Source - azzajauhar@umt.edu.my


Tropical Ocean and Marine Sciences International Symposium (TOMSY) 2018, jointly organized by Institute of Oceanography and Environment (INOS) and First Institute of Oceanography (FIO), China, took place 30-31 October in Kuala Terengganu. It provided a platform for related parties to discuss all aspects of ocean and marine sciences, through oral and poster presentations.

Adopting the theme Discovering the Oceans for Future Sustainability, the symposium brought together leading academic scientists, researchers and research scholars to exchange and share their experiences and research results about all aspects of ocean and marine sciences especially in the tropical areas.

Symposium chairman Associate Professor Dr Suhaimi Suratman said that the symposium hoped to review the activities and processes that contributed to the threat of pollution, reduction of pH due to sea water acidity, coral bleaching, and others to ensure sustainability of marine resources, as well as to nd the best method that is well-established.

The two-day symposium was attended by more than 100 participants from local regions and other countries including China, Indonesia, and Vietnam.

A total of 110 papers were presented as oral or poster presentation. 

Papers covered diverse elds from Biological Oceanography to Ocean Governance.

Professor Dr Chen Li Qi of Third Institute of Oceanography, China, who was the Keynote Presenter, presented a paper entitled Global Ocean Acidi cation Without Borders: A Case Study from the Arctic Ocean.

UMT Vice Chancellor in her speech said that all researchers needed to share existing knowledge and new discoveries to the public in order to create a generation that is aware of ocean pollutions and conservation.

“This symposium can provide methods to solve the crisis regarding ocean and marine sciences especially in this region, and share them with concerned authorities,”added Professor Nor Aieni.

Also held was the signing ceremony of a Memorandum of Understanding between UMT and National Marine Data and Information Service (NMDIS) of China that calls for research and technical collaboration in Marine Big Data Platform.

Scienti c equipment expo was also held to give participants exposure to the latest equipment in the market which can help in the research and teaching, especially in the Malaysian setting.

Source - aidy@umt.edu.my


In a room of medium size, there are shelves at every corner of the wall. Some are stacked with canned food and dry goods. Others with foolscap papers, boxes of pens and pencils, and miscellaneous stationary items in a neat arrangement.

UMT students can go in and take out any of these items for free.

Project Gerobok Rezeki, or Cupboard of Keeps, has been helping a sizeable number of UMT students by giving free food, drinks, and other necessities for the past one year and a half.

The project was started in March 2017 by Dr Izan Jaafar, lecturer of UMT and currently Director of Student Holistic Development and Counselling Centre, when she was heading the Social and Community subcommittee of MUTIARA, a club for female UMT sta .

The idea to set up Gerobok Rezeki at UMT then was inspired by charity projects carried out by some mosques across Malaysia, called Projek Gerobok, to help the poor and the needy community through food giving.

“So I thought, why not do something similar at UMT, where we also have the poor and the needy students,” she said.

Gerobok Rezeki operates from a room on the rst level of the library building, which is considered a strategic location given that many students pass it by when going to classes and returning to the hostels.

Various items are available, including canned sardines, rice, eggs, cream crackers, tea, and creamer to name a few. There are also stationary items like pens and pencils, highlighters, and foolscap papers.

Students are not required to register, or show any proof of being on tight budget. They can just come in and take what they need. They do however have to write their names and student numbers, as well as items taken, for inventory and statistics purposes.

Part of the supplies comes from donations by UMT sta , alumni, and individuals. Others are purchased using money from the fund, some of which also comes from donations.

Gerobok Rezeki creates its own fund as well.

“We organise income-making activities to increase our fund, such as used clothes sale, where we sell shirts, pants, and other clothing items we get through donation.

We also sell used books, and organize charity events.

We try to come up with creative ideas on how to get more money,” said Dr Izan.

To date, more than 500 students have used the service of Gerobok Rezeki. On average, 15 students frequent the place, which opens 5 days a week.

To help with the day-to-day operations, she recruits student volunteers. Presently, there are 70 of them, from diploma, under graduate, and graduate programmes, and from di erent races and religions.

These volunteers are responsible for opening and closing the place, stocking the supplies, and performing other administrative duties.

One of the volunteers, Muhamad Kairul Nizam Thamrin, Marketing student, said that he joined the team because he enjoyed doing charity work and that it made him feel at peace.

“I believe that when we help ease other people’s lives, ours will be positively a ected as well in return,” he said.

Muhamad Kairul was appointed the head of volunteers February this year.

For as long as he remains a volunteer, Muhamad Khairul will be seen at Gerobok Rezeki, overseeing its running, helping to restock supplies, and making sure cash-strapped UMT students are taken care of.

Source - izanjaafar@umt.edu.my

Universiti Malaysia Terengganu

21030 Kuala Nerus, Terengganu,

Website: https://www.umt.edu.my  Email: pro@umt.edu.my

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