Sarawak Energy Bridge Industry-Academia Gap

State Power Company’s scholarship programme reinforce commitment to help Sarawak intensify its capacity building efforts

KUCHING, 5th November 2015, THURSDAY: Sarawak Energy continues to reinforce its commitment to develop Sarawak talent, in the process bridging the gap between industry and academia to assist capacity building.

Besides developing long term, sustainable partnerships with higher learning institutions in the state, the energy company’s scholarship programme worth RM8 million annually has begun paving the way for bright young Sarawakians to secure their place in the industry.  

A get together session held today at Menara Sarawak Energy brought a group of scholarship recipients closer to the company’s key figures, including Datuk Torstein Dale Sjotveit, Sarawak Energy Group Chief Executive Officer and Hajah Siti Aisah Adenan, vice president for People and Leadership Development among others.

The group of scholars, comprising 20 of the company’s total 63 scholars, had the opportunity to meet with Heads of Departments to get a clearer picture on Sarawak Energy’s work culture and expectations.

In turn, the session provided the state power company the opportunity take note of bright sparks with the potential to join the company after graduation.

The scholars studying in universities in Miri, Sibu and Kuching presented a good mix of both technical and non-technical fields ranging from finance, computer science and various engineering disciplines.

In his remarks, Torstein said Sarawak Energy was working with the State Government to build the future of the state by developing the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy (SCORE) to ensure young people such as the scholars have high paying local jobs in their homeland without to move elsewhere.

“This scholarship programme is a small part of this overall development agenda – to prepare you and other young Sarawakians for the thousands of new job opportunities that will have stemmed from  SCORE,  as the amount of Foreign Direct Investment grows,” he said.

He said Sarawak Energy was one of several private sector corporations that have scholarship programmes, but what was unique about the company was the opportunity to understand the funding organisation through events such as today’s Scholars Get Together session.

“We hope that through today’s informal gathering, we can get to know you better and you, us.   Take this opportunity to talk to our senior management so they can explain to you about Sarawak Energy – what we do, what we plan to do, and the kind of help we need to do it. On our part, we want to ensure we secure the top students from various fields so that we can track their progress and offer them jobs in the near future.  You are top students,” he said.

The programme was introduced in 2014 and has grown. This year alone the company received over 700 applications of which 55 were selected while a further 96 were shortlisted and are selected for the 2016 academic year.

The scholarship, open to all Sarawakians, aims to complement the state government’s efforts to ensure sufficient local manpower for the SCORE.

At the event,  Sarawak Energy also signed memoranda of understanding (MOU) with colleges IBS and Sunway.

The MOU frames cooperation between the signatories to develop employment opportunities at Sarawak Energy for top performing graduates from the colleges, industrial training for undergraduate students and scholarships for top-performing students.

Signing on behalf of Sarawak Energy was Torstein witnessed by Hjh Siti Aisah. IBS College was represented by Dr Antony Hii, Principal and President and Maleensa Swee, Deputy Principal whereas Sunway College was represented by Joseph Lim Jit Sek, Chief Executive Officer and Florence Yap Chiew Ying, Finance Director.

Similar MOUs were inked earlier in the year marking collaborations with Curtin University in Miri and also SEGi University.

With Education and Young People being a key focus of Sarawak Energy, the company is developing a long term sustainable partnership with higher learning institutions in the state as well as providing education support to communities affected by its projects.

Recently, the utility entered an MOU with the Bakun Charitable Trust to provide further education support for the Penans in the Belaga district, especially those directly affected by the newly completed Murum Hydroelectric Plant through an annual special education fund worth RM200,000.

Sarawak Group Chief Executive Officer Datuk Torstein Dale Sjotveit (centre) with (seated from left) Sarawak Energy Chief Financial Officer Alexander Chin, IBS College Deputy Principal Maleensa Swee, Principal and President Dr Anthony Hii, Sarawak Energy Vice President for People and Leadership Development Hjh Siti Aisah Adenan, Sunway College Chief Executive Officer Joseph Lim Jit Sek, Finance Director Florence Yap Chiew Ying and Sarawak Energy Head of Corporate Communications Peing Tajang take a group photo with the scholarship recipients and Sarawak Energy’s heads of department and divisions.

A group of scholars receive feedback from Sarawak Energy Vice President of Transmission Raphael Chung.

Sarawak Energy Senior Manager for Finance Operation Francis Lee briefs a group of scholars on the company’s finance department.

Sarawak Group Chief Executive Officer Datuk Torstein Dale Sjotveit shake hands on the newly established partnership with Sunway College Chief Executive Officer Joseph Lim Jit Sek (third left) and IBS College Principal and President Dr Anthony Hii (second left) as (from left) IBS College Deputy Principal Maleensa Swee, Sarawak Energy Vice President for People and Leadership Development Hjh Siti Aisah Adenan and Sunway College Finance Director Florence Yap Chiew Ying look on.