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Sabah aims for 60pc of Science students
Published on: Thursday, September 28, 2023
By: Anthea Peter
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Sabah aims for 60pc of Science students
Hajiji stressed the need to increase students’ involvement in science, as Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) has been identified as one of the important catalysts to drive socio-economic development in the 12th Malaysia Plan and also the Sabah Maju Jaya Development Plan (SMJ).
Kota Kinabalu: The State Government is aiming for 60 per cent of students in Sabah to opt for the Science stream and 40 per cent the Arts stream. 

Chief Minister Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor said so far, only 28 per cent of Sabahan students are involved in the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) fields, and hoped it could reach 40 per cent by 2025. 

He said the rate of students opting for STEM education, especially pure science, is decreasing in the country. 

“The State Government takes this scenario seriously as we need to provide highly skilled human capital in technical, scientific and technological fields to meet the needs of the industry in the future.

“As such, the State Government has a “60:40” target (for the students), which is 60 per cent the Science stream and 40 per cent the Arts stream. 

“Various strategies are implemented to ensure this target is achieved,” he said when officiating the “Experiencing Science: Enlightening Innovation” mobile exhibition tour in Sabah at the Tg Aru State Library, here, Wednesday. 

His speech was read by Deputy Chief Minister III cum Works Minister Datuk Ir Shahelmey Yahya. Also present were State Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Datuk Dr Mohd Arifin Mohd Arif and Chinese Consul-General in Kota Kinabalu Huang Shifang.

Hajiji stressed the need to increase students’ involvement in science, as Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) has been identified as one of the important catalysts to drive socio-economic development in the 12th Malaysia Plan and also the Sabah Maju Jaya Development Plan (SMJ).

He said a strategic and dynamic emphasis on STI, in line with global trends, will increase knowledge, innovation, quality of life and wellbeing of the people. 

In this regard, he said the State Government through the Science, Technology and Innovation Ministry (KSTI) is always committed to increasing public awareness on the importance of STI.

Hajiji said KSTI has formulated a Strategic Plan 2022-2025 as a guide in implementing various programmes and initiatives to empower the STIE ecosystem in Sabah.

He said these include the joint STEM Fiesta Programme with 24 District Education Offices, Sabah Science Carnival, Borneo Science Adventure and Sabah Science Award Ceremony which have benefited 1,296 schools.

He added that several collaborations have already been signed with several ministries at the federal level, in addition to strategic collaborations with public educational institutions such as Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) and Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) and private ones.

On the “Experiencing Science: Enlightening Innovation” mobile exhibition tour in Sabah, Hajiji said Sabah was the first State in Malaysia and the third in Asia to implement the interactive programme.

He said KSTI, in collaboration with China Science and Technology Museum and Guangxi Science and Technology Museum, will hold a series of mobile interactive science exhibitions in 14 selected districts. This collaboration will run for three years until Sept 26, 2026. 

“This exhibition is very meaningful because the Government of the People’s Republic of China has implemented many new efforts and initiatives in the field of STI, and is ranked 11th in the Global Innovation Index 2022. 

“This situation has positioned them as the world’s leading science and technology superpower.

“This exhibition is also one of KSTI’s initiatives to foster students’ interest in STEM in the State, besides being one of the core elements in Sabah’s agenda and the direction of the Sabah Maju Jaya. 

“I also want cooperation opportunities with China to be expanded, especially in the field of Education, Technical and Vocational Training (TVET) and other technologies in the future,” he said.

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