Malaysia learns from Ireland in bid to become signatory of Sydney and Dublin Accords
20 November 2017
Malaysia is currently a signatory member of the Washington Accord, together with Engineers Ireland. Representatives from the Board of Engineers Malaysia, the engineering body in that country, were in Engineers Ireland HQ in 22 Clyde Road from 25-26 October in order to further its bid to become signatories of the Sydney and Washington Accords, too.
“The main purpose of our visit to Ireland is, firstly, to share and learn aspects of the accreditation process for the Washington Accord, of which the Malaysian organisation is a signatory,” explained Sidek Bin Ahmad, chair of the Engineering Accreditation Council of the Board of Engineers Malaysia.”The second purpose is in regard to our forthcoming assessment for the Sydney and Dublin Accords, of which the Engineering Accreditation Council Malaysia is already a provisional member [this was approved at the meeting in August of the International Engineering Alliance in Anchorage, Alaska].
“The review panel will be visiting Malaysia this year in November, led by Engineers Ireland with three other members from the US and Australia,” he added.
Malaysia hopes that after the assessment to be conducted by the panel, Malaysia will become a full signatory member at the forthcoming meeting of the International Engineering Alliance in London in 2018.
“As a signatory member, we share common guidelines for engineers who wish to become chartered. The guidelines are continually reviewed and, on this visit, we’re reviewing various elements of that such as the academic requirements for engineering programmes. All applicants to the Accords must comply with the guidelines to be accepted and achieve mutual recognition,” said Sidek Bin Ahmad.
There are many challenges ahead for accreditation boards. Globally, the engineering fraternity and programmes are undergoing various changes. With the advent of Industry 4.0, academia has to take this into account in compiling the course content of future programmes to meet the needs of industry and the expectations of the general public.
“We have to continue increasing the depth and breadth of engineering programmes,” he added. “One of the biggest challenges that we all face as owners of engineering programmes is that employers expect engineers to be ready for employment upon graduation. That warrants the need for us to ensure that the quality of the program is not compromised, while at the same time providing enough practical experience to meet the expectations of employers. The difficult part is to balance the practical and academic requirements. Industry and the environment changes all the time,” said Bin Ahmad.