Highlights/ Achievements

TAR UMT Bag Three Awards at MINIC SDG 2023

Two teams of TAR UMT bioscience students showed off their imagination and innovation skills in the Microbes Invention, Innovation and Ideation Challenge: Sustainable Development Goals (MINIC SDG) 2023 held on 18 – 19 November 2023 to bag the Second Prize, one Gold, and one Bronze awards in the Undergraduate category.

The competition, created and hosted by University Putra Malaysia (UPM), aims to inspire students to solve real-world problems using microbes or microbial technology while promoting innovation and creativity within the field of science. The 2023 edition also requires participants’ proposals to be aligned with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.

Held at The Mines Shopping Mall, the 2023 edition saw TAR UMT’s team Purple Warriors taking home the Second Prize and Gold award, while team PSP Tide claimed the Bronze award.

Purple Warriors, which consists of Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Bioscience with Chemistry students Leow Kai Zhe, Yap Wen Nie and Wu Wei Li, proposed an approach to treat non-small cell lung cancer by introducing a resident bacterium that can eliminate tumour cells.

(From right) Kai Zhe, Wei Li and Wen Nie receiving the Gold award during the MINIC SDG 2023 award ceremony.


“It was an entirely new experience for us to be participating in a competition. We were excited and nervous to present our idea, but we were able to support each other as a team. It was a shock that we managed to win two awards because there were so many great ideas presented by all the participants, but we are thankful to be named as one of the winners,” said Kai Zhe.

Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Bioscience with Chemistry students Jillian Lai Wern Ern and Leong Kar Weng teamed up with Diploma in Science student Goh Chin Jie to form team PSP Tide and proposed a capsule product containing photosynthetic bacteria that can be widely distributed to help combat water pollution.

(From right) Kar Weng, Chin Jie and Jillian takes home the Bronze award during the MINIC SDG 2023 award ceremony.

“The competition is a great opportunity for us to learn outside of the campus and obtain a wider perspective in our field by interacting with the other teams and exchanging ideas. Plus, the skills we learn like innovation, critical thinking and adaptability are highly valued that can enable us to thrive in our future careers,” said Jillian.

Kai Zhe wholeheartedly agreed with Jillian, adding: “Scientists of tomorrow cannot just excel in science alone. We need to acquire and refine other soft skills that will help us communicate our ideas effectively and assimilate with evolving work environments seamlessly. Having these skills will increase our competitive advantage as valuable assets to future employers.”

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