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Tsukuba-MJIIT Joint Seminar 2023 in conjunction with 1st International Conference on Sustainable Chemical, Energy and Environmental Engineering (SCE3) 2023

On the 9th of March 2023, Tsukuba-MJIIT Joint Seminar was held in Ibis Hotel, Kuala Lumpur in conjunction with 1st International Conference on Sustainable Chemical, Energy and Environmental Engineering (SCE3) 2023. This annual event was hosted by Malaysia-Japan International Institute of Technology (MJIIT), UTM Kuala Lumpur campus in collaboration with our partner university, University of Tsukuba (UT), Japan. 

This Joint Seminar (1 credit) is a part of the curriculum of our unique Joint Master’s Degree Program Master of Sustainability and Environmental Sciences (MMJJ) with UT in which students are required to present their research project and will be evaluated by panels from both institutions.

The delegation from UT consists of Prof. Dr. Iwane Suzuki, Prof. Dr. Maki Tsujimura, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Yoshiaki Maeda, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Yuko Omori and Ms. Tomomi Watanabe. 

Tsukuba-MJIIT Joint Seminar 2023
Conference committee members

MJIIT Global Project-Based Learning (gPBL) 2023 with Shibaura Institute of Technology, Japan

Global Project-Based Learning, or otherwise referred to as gPBL is one of the many initiatives from Shibaura Institute of Technology (SIT), Japan to facilitate outside-classroom learning via educational collaboration with partner universities.

The SIT delegation was led by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Azham bin Zulkharnain and Assoc. Prof. Dr. Yoshihisa Hirota from the Department of Bioscience and Engineering. As the director of the program, I have been in-charged in managing the gPBL together with MJIIT Liaison and Internationalisation Officer, Ts. Dr. Nor Ruwaida binti Jamian.

For a duration of 10 days, 17 students from SIT and 10 students from the Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering (ChEE), Malaysia-Japan International Institute of technology (MJIIT) UTM KL which are referred to in this program as ‘MJIIT Buddy’, have participated in the SIT-MJIIT gPBL programme at MJIIT, UTM KL from 23rd February to 4th March 2023.

The arrival of Shibaura Institute of Technology (SIT) students and academic staffs at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA)

During the program’s duration, the participants were divided into groups of 4 or 5 for Project-Based Learning (PBL). They have been guided by the facilitators, Prof. Dr. Masafumi Goto, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Aznah binti Nor Anuar, Dr. Mariam Firdhaus binti Mad Nordin and Dr. Liew Wai Loan. For a duration of roughly 4 days, the students worked in their respective groups to complete their assigned experiments in their assigned laboratories, conduct data analysis, and discuss their findings – all via self-directed learning. Each group presented their findings on the fourth day. The PBL segment of gPBL provided students the opportunity to hone their skills in the context of globalization as they navigate through new cultural settings and exchange of ideas through the students’ collaboration with peers. Additionally, the students of SIT were given a tour around the engineering laboratories available in MJIIT.

Conducting the experiment for methylene blue dye removal using activated bamboo charcoal as an adsorbent
Conducting water quality assessment led by Dr. Liew Wai Loan
Discussion among peers for Project-Based Learning (PBL)
Lab tour to MJIIT’s Algal Biomass iKOHZA (AlBio) with the SIT students led by Ts. Dr. Abd Halim bin Md Ali
Final presentation on PBL findings

Cultural exchange is also an objective of gPBL. The students of SIT and UTM-MJIIT got to showcase their unique cultures during the Enculturation Dinner with UTM International on Day 5. The Enculturation Dinner was also attended by the honourable Pro-Vice Chancellor of UTM Kuala Lumpur campus, Prof. Ts. Dr. Abd Latif bin Saleh and MJIIT’s honourable dean, Prof. Ts. Dr. Ali bin Selamat.

The Japanese students of SIT delivered an enchanting performance of Soran Bushi, a famous sea shanty in Japan while the MJIIT buddies sang their hearts out to the classic pop hit ‘Kau Ilhamku’ by Man Bai.

The representative students of SIT delivering their greetings prior to performing Soran Bushi, a Japanese sea shanty
Obligatory post-event photo with everyone adoring traditional outfits and doing the Gyaru pose
Academic staff of MJIIT, SIT and technical staff from UTM International

Learning outside traditional settings was also emphasized as SIT students and MJIIT Buddies explored Kuala Lumpur during a social excursion with UTM International Kuala Lumpur where participants got to visit Kuala Lumpur’s hotspots. The students of SIT got to experience very authentic Malaysian experiences, even after the one-day slot ended. Accompanied by the MJIIT buddies, they got to try out local delicacies such as nasi kerabu, dodol, and the infamous durian fruit at local stalls.

Overall, this gPBL programme not only equipped participants with technical and analytical skills learned in traditional classroom settings, but also aided students to build strong interpersonal connections, comprehend a wider range of viewpoints, and acquire transferable skills necessary for engagement in multicultural societies.

Visit to KL Tower with UTM International
Happy faces during the closing ceremony, marking the end of this year’s gBPL
The end of gPBL

Meeting with Delightex

On the 21st January 2022, we had a meeting with Ms. Wong Shi Xuan (Senior Manager) from Delightex Singapore. This collaboration is mainly looking at the therapeutic potential of local plants/herbs in treating mental diseases.

This project is being led by Mr. Muhammad Imran Firdaus bin Kamardan, our former research student. We also have Assoc. Prof. Hirofumi Hara (University of Tokyo), Assoc. Prof. Ts. Dr. Nor’azizi bin Othman, Dr. Nadia Farhana binti Azman and myself on board.

Delightex (Delight Explorers) is an independent research, venture creation and investment arm of a Japanese fast-moving consumer goods conglomerate that has the mandate to identify and build the next generation business around naturally occurring substances. Armed with an extensive network of collaboration partners and research facilities, Delightex seeks to evaluate novel technologies, build and invest in innovative companies with the capacity to deliver Delightful Moments.

We hope that this partnership will bridge us, the academia with industry and successful commercialisation. InshaAllah ~

Viva-Voce of Muhammad Syafiq

Salam and hi all!

On the 6th October 2021, we had a viva-voce session for my Master’s student, Muhammad Syafiq bin Razali. The title of his project is Isolation and Characterisation of Copper Leaching Microbes from Sanitary Landfill for Bioleaching. He is also co-supervised by Assoc. Prof. Hirofumi Hara.

The internal examiner was Assoc. Prof. Koji Iwamoto (MJIIT) and the external examiner was Assoc. Prof. Dr. Fauziah binti Shahul Hamid (UM).

Alhamdulillah, Syafiq has successfully passed his viva with corrections and we wish him all the best for his future endeavours!

Congratulations, Syafiq!

Viva-Voce of Ummu Habibah

Salam and hi peeps!

Yesterday, 16th November was the day for viva-voce of Ms. Ummu Habibah binti Faisal, one of Master’s student under my supervision. Her main supervisor is Assoc. Prof. Ts. Dr. Nor’azizi bin Othman and the co-supervisors are Assoc. Prof. Dr. Hirofumi Hara and myself. The title of her project is Identification of Genes Encoding Lignin Depolymerization Enzymes in Agrobacteriam Sp. Strain S2.

The external examiners was Assoc. Prof. Dr. Tengku Haziyamin Tengku Abdul Hamid (IIUM) and the internal examiners was Assoc. Prof. Dr. Koji Iwamoto (MJIIT). She has also successfully published her work in the Microbiology Resource Announcements Journal.

Faisal, U. H. et al. 2021. “Draft Genome Sequence of Lignin-Degradin g Agrobacterium Sp. Strain S2, Isolated from a Decaying Oil Palm Empty Fruit Bunch.“ Microbiol Resour Announc 10 (19). doi: 10.1128/mra.00259-21. (Q3, IF: 0.88)

Alhamdulillah, Ummu Habibah passed the viva with corrections and we wish her all the best for her future endeavours.

Congratulations, Bibah!

Nest-Bio Venture Lab (NBVL) Meeting with Leave a Nest Malaysia Sdn. Bhd.

Hi peeps!

On the 2nd of November, we had a meeting with our industrial partner from Leave a Nest Malaysia Sdn. Bhd. headed by Dr. Izumi Dateyama. Our side was led by Prof. Dr. Muhamad Ali Muhammad Yuzir, supported by Assoc. Prof. Ts. Dr. Nor’azizi Othman.

Several issues were discussed particularly in term of managing the labs from both parties. We hope that this collaborative effort between MJIIT and Leave a Nest Malaysia Sdn. Bhd. will be a stepping stone for more collaboration with international industrial partners in the near future.

“Coming together is a beginning, keeping together is progress, working together is success”. – Henry Ford

Master of Sustainability and Environmental Sciences (Joint Degree Program) with University of Tsukuba, Japan : Oral Entrance Exam

Assalamualaikum wbt. and hi all!

On the 31st May and 18th August 2021, we have jointly organised the JDP Oral Entrance Examination for upcoming September 2021 (UTM) and April 2022 (UT) intakes. We have 15 candidates from UTM and 3 candidates from UT. The coordinators of this program are Dr. Norhuda Abdul Manaf and Assoc. Prof. Dr. Koji Iwamoto. Meanwhile the coordinator for UT is Assoc. Prof. Dr. Kazuya Shimizu.

Some snippets of this program:

This programme is the Joint Master’s Degree programme that develops experts who contribute to solve the complicated global issues, especially in tropical Asia by sustainable and environmental sciences, through the jointly supervised system that takes advantages of the strength of two universities, Malaysia – Japan International Institute of Technology and University of Tsukuba, Japan.

Fees : RM 44,670 (Local) / RM 56,500 (International)

Duration : 2 years (Fulltime)

Minimum requirements : A Bachelor’s Degree with good honours from Universiti Teknologi Malaysia or any other institutions of any higher learning recognised by the Senate (UK NARIC), and CPA 2.5 or above, or 2.0 ≦ CPA ≦ 2.49 with 5 years working experiences.

Malaysia National Commission for UNESCO, Ministry of Education Malaysia (Suruhanjaya Kebangsaan UNESCO Malaysia (SKUM)

Assalamualaikum wbt. and Happy Friday to all!

Alhamdulillah, we have finally secured the UNESCO SKUM grant for our project entitled ‘Program Transformasi Ekonomi dan Pendidikan ke arah Pembangunan Modal Insan Komuniti Orang Asli’ amounted RM17,500.00 lead by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Sheikh Ahmad Zaki Bin Shaikh Salim.

We hope that this program will achieved its objectives and benefit the Orang Asli community of Pos Betau. InsyaAllah!

Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much”. – Helen Keller

Malaysia Social Innovation (MySI) Grant

Assalamualaikum wbt. and hi all!

Today (3rd August 2021) is the day for our group to present the proposal of MySI Grant 2021 in the preliminary evaluation session organized by Yayasan Inovasi Malaysia (YIM).

Our team is lead by Prof. Madya Ts. Dr. Sheikh Ahmad Zaki Bin Shaikh Salim and our proposal is entitled ‘Program Agro-Ekonomi Penanaman Pelbagai Sayuran Berasaskan Teknologi Hidroponik Bersama Komuniti Orang Asli Pos Betau, Kuala Lipis, Pahang’.

Some snippets of this program :

Objektif MySI

Meningkatkan kesejahteraan hidup masyarakat keutamaan kepada golongan B40 dan kumpulan yang terkesan akibat selepas pandemik COVID-19 melalui pelaksanaan projek aplikasi teknologi tempatan yang berinovatif yang telah dibangunkan dan sedia dilaksanakan secara mampan.

Tema MySI

Merakyatkan Inovasi Demi Kesejahteraan Masa Hadapan

It was such a great experience for me and we hope that we could secure the grant. InsyaAllah!

“You can invent alone, but you can’t innovate alone”. – Gijs van-Wulfen