ABOUT THE PROGRAM

To develop children’s life skills by inspiring them to create with technology

Young Innovators Challenge is an annual program aims at catalysing maker movement in secondary schools. In this program, students are mentored by teachers to solve real-life problems using open-source embedded system and software. Students have the opportunity to develop projects they are passionate about. This learning journey nurtures their life skills.
Students today consume rather than create with technology. They indulge heavily in social media and computer games. Through making, they become creators. This STEM-based learning platform nurtures their inborn passion to learn and equips them with life skills.
Artificial intelligence, Internet of Things, 3D printing, and other upcoming technologies will play a role in every aspects of our children’s lives. The program provides opportunity for them to create and apply open-source technologies in various fields.
In a consuming mode as opposed to creating mode, students lack opportunities to develop life skills — communication, collaboration, creativity and critical thinking. The program provides opportunity for them to invest in developing the projects of their interest. The experiential learning journey nurtures their life skills.

IMPACT OF THE PROGRAM

Young Innovators Challenge (YIC) started in 2013 with only 2 schools in Penang. Today we have grown to more than 300 secondary schools, involving more than 5,000 students with more than 1,000 innovative projects. This was achieved through the collaboration of various public and private universities and support from government agencies, private, and multinational companies.

YIC has opened doors for students from all background to discover their abilities to identify and solve real-life problems, to communicate their ideas across, and to have their projects adopted by communities.

For example, an all-girls team from SAM Jeram in rural Selangor emerged as the 2017’s winner with their portable microscope project, Mykroscope. They were the first in the country to register their project as an open-sourced hardware. With the help of Yayasan Sime Darby, 2,000 units of Mykroscope were distributed to 200 schools in Malaysia.

Students from YIC are encouraged to apply their learnings beyond this program. In 2017, 5 of our participants were selected into an accelerator program in Silicon Valley, US through the MDeC’s #MYDMGX program. Furthermore, 12 students used their learning experience in building prototypes to work with KHIND Malaysia’s R&D team. These are just a few of the many stories of our students’ journey through YIC.

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