Kuching (Sarawak), Tuesday, 25 July, 2017 – Tunku Putra School’s (TPS) two ‘Young Innovator’ representatives recently celebrated their historic achievements as champions and first runner-up at the recent 2017 Young Innovators’ Challenge, which was organised and hosted by Swinburne University. An annual national competition, the Young Innovators’ Challenge aims to inspire passion for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) among secondary school students, and to develop their skills in problem solving, critical and innovative thinking, while exposing them to open source hardware and software.
This year, TPS competed alongside 40 other teams – pitching their ideas and demonstrating their projects to a panel of expert judges who represented parallel expert industries – competing for the chance to progress to the national-level competition, which will be held later this year.
Roxanne Lee Kah Yean and Lim Sein (Year 11) and Aalisha Riya Byles (Year 8), emerged as Champions, with their invention ‘Storebuddy’, a project that helps to determine whether a stock (e.g. rice, bean, and grain) is running low in the storage container. Once the minimum threshold level is reached, the system will send an alert through email. Speaking passionately about their achievement, Roxanne, Sein and Aalisha attributed their innovation and competition result to camaraderie teamwork and, saying: “[it is] because we were a team and learned a lot from each other.”
Joseph Chung Ming Chung, Muhammad Nur Iman Bin Zaidel and Mohammad Nazreen Bin Kassim Ismail (Tingkatan 3), won the first runner-up prize, with the ‘Pheromone e-trapper,’ which is a biological solution to control or reduce the population of a hidden pest – the bunch moth of the Tirathaba species, which infests oil palm trees by significantly reducing its production yield.
Joseph, Iman and Nazreen explained that helping farmers, because of their innovation, was really important to them, offering a form of pest control that cares for the environment.
It was at the same event in 2016 that Joseph Chung took the first steps on a memorable journey that led to him receiving an invitation to a poster presentation for his Smart E-Cushion at the National Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel (NPUAP) Biennial Conference held in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA in March 2017 – showcasing the best of TPS on the global stage.
TPS Principal, Susan Holmes commended the students’ success, adding that, “they had put their creativity, thinking prowess, problem-solving expertise and exposure to open-source hardware and software to great effect with their remarkable achievements.”