A warm welcome to AI & Digital Readiness Partnership2023 event. It is organised to bring together educators, industry practitioners and professionals to reflect on the latest technology developments, understand their impact on jobs and work processes and update the new skills and competencies that educators must impart to the students.
Continuous Re-skilling and Up-skilling
At the World Economic Forum 53rd Annual Meeting at Davos, Switzerland in January this year, there was a discussion on how to prepare 1 Billion People for Tomorrow’s Economy. Many international speakers and panellists highlighted that one of the challenges of our time would be the continuous reskilling of people for the constantly changing economy.
The half-life of skills becomes increasingly shortened as skills are rendered obsolete by new technologies which disrupt work processes and jobs. Every worker has to constantly acquire new skills. Employers have to invest in reskilling and upskilling their workforce to enable business transformation.
Generative AI is an example of how jobs and work will be disrupted. Gen-AI can be harnessed at the workplace to complement human intelligence. Workers will need to work differently. At ITE, we embrace new technologies such as Gen-AI and will equip our students with the know-how to leverage these new tools. Failure to do so could render our curricula and students’ competencies irrelevant to the industry.
ITE recognizes the importance of partnering industry and employers to develop robust and relevant programmes.
- Pre-Employment Training (PET). We tap on the inputs of industry and employers to develop the skills content of the Higher NITEC, Technical Diploma and Work Study Diploma curricula.
- Continuing Education and Training (CET). ITE consults with employers and companies as we develop courses for working adults to upskill or re-skill so that they stay employable or can pivot to other jobs and sectors.
- Workplace Learning & Work-Study Programmes. Learning at the workplace through on-the-job training is a powerful training approach. The Work-Study Diploma programme is delivered through 70% on-the-job training and 30% on-campus training. ITE is grateful to the 747 companies who have become our partners for the 40 WSDip programmes and engaged in upskilling 2,443 WSDip trainees.
Three MOU Partners
This afternoon, we are pleased to formalise ITE’s collaboration with three distinguished industry partners: Bosch Rexroth Pte Ltd, Cisco International Ltd, and UBTECH Robotics Co. Ltd. Let me now highlight key features of our collaboration with each of them.
- Bosch Rexroth Pte Ltd. Bosch Rexroth, a German-based company, is a leading provider of automation solutions for industrial and mobile applications. They are our long-time partner and were awarded the Distinguished Industry Partner Award last year at our 30th anniversary. This MOU reaffirms their commitment to provide curricular inputs for advanced manufacturing, support in the setting up of the AIoT and Automation training facility in College West as well as local and overseas training opportunities for our staff and students in Germany.
- Cisco International Ltd. Cisco, a US-based company, is a worldwide leader in technologies that power the internet and offer end-to-end security with zero thrust approach and high visibility across the entire multi-IT network to avoid cyberattacks. The Cisco Networking Academy provides a comprehensive curriculum covering various technology topics and learning materials. They have graciously provided ITE students access to the online resources as well as hands-on lab sessions. ITE staff will also have access to the Cisco Networking Academy curricula, seminars and certifications to enhance their professional capabilities in the latest ICT-related technologies.
- UBTECH Robotics Co. Ltd. UBTECH, a Shenzhen-based company, provides immersive interaction and intelligent humanoid smart devices and training via AI technology in Facial Recognition, Data and Natural Language Processing. ITE signed the first MOU virtually with them in Aug 2020 amid the pandemic. They offered AI & Humanoid training for our students and staff with their renowned ‘Alpha Mini’ – a highly portable and cute Intelligent Humanoid Robot. Under the new MOU, they will be sponsoring ‘Curzr’, a human-like design robot that uses cloud-based intelligence service. This would present exciting possibilities for our students to work on AI-enabled customisable industrial solutions. Other collaborations will include curriculum development, industry projects, competitions and showcasing new technologies at the Drone & Robot Hub in College West.
ITE staff and students look forward to the new learning, skills development and collaborations with our three MOU partners.
Opening of AIoT & Automation Lab
In conjunction with today’s MOU signing ceremony, we are officiating the opening of the new AIoT & Automation Lab, set up in collaboration with BOSCH Rexroth to provide authentic learning in Advanced Manufacturing and support WSDip in Applied Electronics & AI and Highe Nitec courses based on Industry 4.0. The training facility integrates AI, IoT, and automation and gives our learners the opportunity to use the latest technologies to acquire industry-relevant skills.
In closing, I thank all our industry partners for your strong support for ITE. I am confident that, together, we will excite, equip and empower our students and adult learners to harness the potential of AI and be fired up with the passion to join the related industry.