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Skills mismatch widening

KOTA KINABALU: The Binary University has launched a scholarship programme with a grant of RM3 million to help Sabahan youths finance their tertiary education at the institute.

The scholarship known as Biasisiwa Binary Negeri Sabah (BBNS), would provide RM10,000 each to 300 eligible students to pursue any of the diploma, degree or master programmes offered by the university.

Binary University executive chairman Dato Professor Joseph Adaikalam said the grant was aimed at not only to reduce the financial burden of local Sabahan students but also to help them become highly competitive entrepreneurial graduates.

“Through this grant, we also wish to produce youth entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurs are the lifeblood of any nation. They create new wealth and new jobs,” he said in his welcoming remarks at the launch of the scholarship.

The ceremony was officiated by Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun, who is also the minister in charge of the state’s education portfolio.

Earlier, Adaikalam said Sabah had the highest incidence of youth unemployment among all states in Malaysia, with skills mismatch on the youth labour market increasingly becoming a trend.

In response to this, he said Binary University had taken the initiative to become the first entrepreneurship university to produce industry specialist professional graduates and youth entrepreneurs.

“According to both the World Bank Report and ILO Report on youth unemployment, among the strategies that a country should pursue to address the youth unemployment problem is to provide more entrepreneurial opportunities for youth to be entrepreneurs or self employed, plus equipping the youth with skills that match the industry,” he said.

Adaikalam also informed that Binary University has signed a memorandum of understanding with the SMI Association of Malaysia for exploring partnership and employment opportunities for its graduates, especially in emerging new niche markets.

The MoU would allow SMI (small and medium industries) to utilize the university’s wide international student network to enhance their presence in the international market, he said, noting that students from over 60 countries patronize Binary University.

The Binary University of Sabah offers courses in entrepreneurship, management and information technology.

The BBNS application forms were distributed by Masidi to youth leaders from various organizations, who will be nominating five students each for the scholarship.

BBNS is the second scholarship extended to Sabah by Binary University after a  RM3.7 million Biasiswa Binary KBSS back in 2000.