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Cheers for PETRONAS BeDigital Bootcamp | Daily Express Online

Cheers for PETRONAS BeDigital Bootcamp

Published on: Tuesday, March 29, 2022

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Saba: KOTA KINABALU: It was an intense learning experience for a group of 18 students from Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) who cut short their mid-term break to join a specially organized program called PETRONAS BeDigital Bootcamp. Participants emerged from the two-week session reporting greater self-confidence, better ability to collaborate as a team, and with broader perspectives on how to transition into the world of work in a digital environment. “When I first heard from my speaker that PETRONAS was hosting a bootcamp, I thought I should take the opportunity to see what I could get out of it,” said Dexter Lim, a native from Tenom inside Sabah.

“And what a bootcamp it was. It really pushed our mental toughness. The biggest learning for me is to be able to work in a team, to be firm in the face of challenges and not to give up,” said the 23-year-old student. Learning was quick for participants as they worked through the modules from morning to evening, with only one Sunday between the two weeks as a day off.
Boot camp mods
They started their modules on March 1, 2022, and it gradually became clear that the bootcamp was anything but business as usual. Participants expected it to be about the oil and gas industry or about coding. Instead, it took them to another level, exposing them to the concept of design, data science and artificial intelligence, as well as data visualization and the development of reports and dashboards. “I thought the program was about software and coding, but that was something else. I have no experience in office work and soft skills. I was about to quit but one of coaches encouraged me to stay,” said Ivan Lim Choon Kiat of Kota Kinabalu. He stayed, kept up the momentum and was eventually named top camper.

Dexter…determined to take on challenges, Ivan…top camper, Melven…build trust


Teamwork and communication as well as the ability to identify solutions based on customer pain points, Ivan said, were his biggest learnings. Participants also looked at data storytelling, impactful visual presentations, transitioning into the world of work, updating their resumes, and facing a job interview as well as securing a job in a digital world. They also learned about the concept of technopreneurship, how to create and scale a business venture, and ways to monetize it.
Throw to sharks
The bootcamp ended with a “shark tank” session where students worked in groups to present their ideas to a panel of thoughtful reviewers, who challenged them on the viability of their ideas and provided feedback. alternative perspectives to their proposals. “My group was slow at first,” Dexter said. “But we had frequent discussions and worked on improving our deliverables. It surprised me that in the second week we managed to complete our tasks and actually won second place in the shark tank session. The bootcamp, which aims to strengthen students’ digital literacy to meet the demands of current and future job markets, was organized in collaboration with the Center of Applied Data Science (CADS), Microsoft, Tata Consultancy Service (TCS) and Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS).

Students in discussion at bootcamp

It contains digitally oriented modules led by volunteer trainers from PETRONAS Digital Sdn Bhd, SEd.Lab, Petrosains and PETRONAS Leadership Centre. “I don’t normally like to speak and present in front of an audience,” Melven said Tuesday of Kinabatangan, a district that is home to the country’s second-longest river, Sungai Kinabatangan. “But bootcamp taught me to speak up with confidence.”


Bootcampers also praised safety precautions and adherence to SOPs during the session. “Rooms were sanitized daily and we had to perform daily self-tests before joining bootcamp,” they said. On the bootcamp trainers, the students were in unison in their impressions – that they were all well-versed, helpful and approachable.
Deciphering the labor code
Opening the bootcamp, Aadrin Azly, Chief Digital Officer of PETRONAS, said: “The code we want to crack is: ‘How can we improve the employability of Malaysians?’ and digital is the obvious option. The BeDigital Bootcamp was designed with the main objective of improving the employability of young Malaysian talents before they enter the job market. Bootcamp may have just cracked this code. Since the end of the bootcamp, five participants have received conditional job offers from PETRONAS while five others have received job offers from TCS. In addition, the remaining participants were invited to interviews with the other bootcamp partners for possible internships or industrial training opportunities.

Students working in teams