Abang Johari launches the STEM Playground Virtual Fair 2020 virtually.

KUCHING: In line with the state’s digital economy initiatives and the government’s vision to make Sarawak a developed state by 2030, there is a need to produce quality human capital, said Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg.

He said in order to fulfil that need, the state needs to continue to concentrate on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education.

“Which is why Tabung Ekonomi Gagasan Anak Sarawak (Tegas) always strives to increase knowledge and awareness of STEM education through high impact programmes such as STEM Playground, Drone, Robotics Explore (DROBOTEX), Community Innovation Literacy (COMIL) and many more,” he said when virtually officiating at STEM Playground Virtual Fair 2020 on Monday (Sept 28).

He said moreover Tegas also brings these programmes to the rural areas to bridge the socio-economic gap between urban and rural areas, specifically in terms of education and infrastructure development.

“For instance, SK Pulau Bruit and SK Long Sepiling, which are rural schools, have won champion in innovation competitions at the national level.

“In addition, SMK Jalan Arang has become the champion in the MAKE X 2019 robotics competition in Guangzhou, China. This is a source of pride for us Sarawakians and proves that we can succeed in the digital and innovation fields,” he said.

He then said as the STEM Playground Virtual Fair 2020 was held virtually, there was a programme called virtual tour, an online game related to STEM education, which is good for students. 

“This is a new paradigm shift where we play and learn at the same time. It will definitely create interest among children,” he said.

He said as children’s interest increase it indirectly increases the level of motivation, cognitive level, memory, thinking speed, focus and improve their achievements.

“In school, they may only be provided with facts in books and it may be difficult to fully understand those facts. However, when it is in the form of games, it indirectly enables them to understand better and creates more interest in STEM education,” he said.

Abang Johari stressed that rural students are also not left behind in this STEM Playground Virtual as it is made available offline for them.

“Therefore, I call upon Sarawakians, especially the youth to take this opportunity because it is very helpful for you to improve your knowledge especially in the field of STEM education.

“You are the future of Sarawak for us to achieve the status of the most developed state in Malaysia by 2030,” he said.