The future will be made by creators, not consumers. Hence, the need for Digital Campus (DC). Back for its second year in the running, the multi-tiered initiative is organised by Eduspec Holdings Berhad and Youth On Unity (Y.O.U.), and supported by CyberSecurity Malaysia and the Ministry of Education.
Digital Campus is a platform for Malaysian youths to learn and develop their creativity and innovation via digital education and in turn, apply that knowledge to real life.
This year, however, sets the stage to be bigger as Digital Campus ASEAN edition is introduced. The ASEAN edition of DC will see a greater number of participants as the events namely contests in coding, robotics, and digital art and animation would be spread across three countries; Malaysia, Indonesia, and Vietnam.
"Our mission and singular passion is to empower youths to create and innovate with technology. We intend to expand to other ASEAN countries as we believe that all youths have to think digitally to better their world. And we thought what better way to do that than by opening it up to our neighbouring countries?" said E H Lim, CEO of Eduspec Holdings Berhad.
"This also opens up more opportunities for youths regardless of where they come from which is ultimately our aim in spreading digital knowledge and exposure," he added.
The main highlight will be the three competitions opened to students from across ASEAN.
Students are encouraged to represent their schools in the competition categories of their choice. They can either take part in WeCode the coding contest; International Robothon the robotics challenge; or in the Digital Art and Animation contest. Each contest is carefully crafted to bring out the best creative output in youths digitally.
For WeCode, teams are challenged to explore and come up with their own original creation be it a game, entertainment piece or animation programme for primary students; or a mobile game or edutainment app for secondary students. Zach Marks, who conceptualised and founded Grom Social at the age of 11, will make an appearance as well during the finals.
The event will also see CyberSecurity Malaysia, with the support of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI), hold a talk on becoming a great digital citizen in an effort to promote cyber safety.
Teams participating in International Robothon will have to build and program a robot that can perform multiple tasks and demonstrate a solution to a problem that engineers commonly face in the field. This challenge will be based on the EcoWatch theme.
The possibilities to express creativity is endless when it comes to Digital Art and Animation. Primary students are invited to come up with an art piece based on the theme ‘Life in the 23rd Century’ whereas the theme for secondary students is ‘Fantasy World’.
This year, DC is excited to be working with Grom Social, a safe social network, created by kids for kids. This social network is created especially for kids under the age of 13.
Grom Social and Facebook are the two platforms used for artwork submissions and showcasing. Primary students will upload their artwork on Grom Social while secondary students will upload theirs on Facebook.
“We are extremely proud to serve as a hosting platform for DC Digital Art & Animation 2015. The competition is an exciting and extraordinary opportunity for kids to further their digital art skills, network with other kids and gain recognition of their work. We look forward to hosting the artwork of the competition’s entrants,” said Zach Marks, the 15-year-old founder of Grom Social.
Each representing team will compete amongst themselves at the National Contest level until they qualify for the finals. The finals for Digital Art and Animation will take place at Jakarta, Indonesia on November 8th followed by International Robothon at Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam on November 29th, and WeCode at Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on December 6th.
"Aside from providing a platform for youths to express their talent by combining technology and art, there's another reason why we decided to hold the competitions in Indonesia and Vietnam," added Mohd Nazifuddin bin Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib, Chairman of Youth On Unity. "We also wanted youths to make friends and learn from one another.”
“This would help them expand their existing knowledge and skillset as well as enhance their worldview on the different cultures their peers are coming from. At the end of the day, we want the young minds to evolve from simple computer users to computer enthusiasts who can do wonders. And eventually, they will propel our country forward when they join the workforce,” he said when officiating the launch with Lim.
To learn more about the contests, schools and students can register and get more information from this specially designed portal www.eduplay.com.my or at http://www.gromsocial.com/EduPlay and www.fb.com/eduplayasean.