An industry-academic alliance has recently been forged in Singapore in response to the need for more qualified staff in the information and communications technology (ICT) industry.
The ICT industry worldwide has been addressing the lack of qualified staff to support the ever-increasing needs for technology upgrade of customers. Partnerships between the industry and the academe have been forged to ensure that the products of IT, science and technology, and even business schools are readily employable by the industry or the public sector.
One such partnership that has recently been forged in Singapore involves Alcatel-Lucent, its distributor Transition Systems, and the Institute of Technology Education (ITE), a post-secondary institution established in 1992.
The partners recently signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) for a three-year project focused on producing certified IT professionals in networking, IP services and security.
TSS has committed S$285,000 (US$227,571) for the project - dubbed as the Internet Protocol (IP) Services and Security Capstone Project -- to cover provision of trainers, course materials and equipment to help ITE students with hands-on industry training.
TSS and Alcatel-Lucent will impart industry knowledge to ITE staff who, in turn, will train students in the areas of Web gateway services, security audit compliance solutions, and software application development on IP systems.
The ITE students receiving the training and industry knowledge will be from the School of Electronics and Info-Comm Technology, studying areas such as the Higher Nitec in Wireless Technology and Higher Nitec in Network Security Technology courses.
To further ensure the employability of ITE students, TSS will also sponsor vouchers worth more than US$10,800 for ITE staff and students for the 'Alcatel-Lucent Certified Field Expert certification'.
For its part, ITE is committing three of its staff to be professionally certified annually. The ITE trained staff will then conduct enrichment trainings to ITE students to prepare them for industry certification.
Alcatel-Lucent said the ITE students that will be provided with such training can be employed by both the private and public sector.
Said Ernest Lee, head, regional sales, Singapore, Brunei and Vietnam, Alcatel-Lucent: "We understand that there is a constant demand for qualified field engineers in the industry. This professional certification will give ITE students greater recognition and ensures that the graduates will have a competitive advantage in the local and global IT industry."
For hands-on industry experience, the trained ITE staff will provide technical sales consultancy across the industry in association with TSS, as well as train Alcatel-Lucent's customers by providing training services across various technology platforms.
"ITE's partnership with Transition Systems and Alcatel-Lucent will enable us to leverage on expertise that will enhance our curriculum and employability of our graduates," said Eden Liew, principal, ITE College East. "Not only will the students be empowered with relevant networking industry certification, the practical skills and soft skills picked up from on-the-job training will help to accelerate employment of ITE students."
Sign up for CIO Asia eNewsletters.