KOTA SAMARAHAN, Sept 21 — The establishment of the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Committee to re-evaluate the existing initiatives and policies regarding the learning of STEM in the country will be finalised this year, said Science, Technology, and Innovation Minister (Mosti) Chang Lih Kang.
He said the special committee which will be set up will determine the targeted involvement of STEM for secondary school students apart from formulating the agenda to empower the fields in Malaysia in the short, medium, and long terms.
“Discussions with the secretaries-general of the ministries involved in the effort have been held, and after that, we will hold a meeting with the ministries involved before setting up the full committee.
“The issue of STEM involvement is a cross-ministerial issue so we need to handle and settle it through cross-ministerial collaboration. We have held several pre-council sessions with several ministries, including the Education Ministry (MOE), Higher Education Ministry (MOHE), and the Human Resources Ministry (MHR),” Chang said.
He was speaking to the press after opening the Sarawak level 2023 National Science Week Carnival and the Malaysia Techlympics 2023 Sarawak zone earlier today.
Previously, it was reported the initiative needs to be implemented, as statistics showed a waning interest among school leavers in STEM, which is a worrying trend as Malaysia heads towards becoming a developed nation by 2030.
In this regard, Chang said the participation of Sarawak in Malaysia Techlympics 2023 is aimed at unearthing talents as well as fostering interest among the younger generation towards STEM as well as Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) which saw an increase of almost three-fold compared to last year.
“This an excellent sign, so in future, the Sarawak government will be achieving 60 per cent STEM students and we at the central government have to buck up,” he said.
Earlier in his speech, Chang said 63,589 participants involving primary and secondary school students took part in the programme compared to 20,319 participants in 2022.
The Sarawak level Malaysia Techlympics 2023 was held at Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (Unimas) which is zone four after the Northern Zone, Sabah Zone, and Central Zone before moving to the Southern and Eastern Zone.
The 2023 National Science Week Carnival in Sarawak is the seventh after Negeri Sembilan, Kedah, Johor, Penang, Sabah, and Selangor, which began in stages until next month.