|George Town, 3 APRIL 2018 - ALL the students had to do were build a tower of plastic straws strong enough to hold up three books and five other challenges. And that earned the winners up to 50% off the tuition fees for any engineering diploma courses at KDU Penang University College.|
Thirty-six secondary school students recently took part in KDU Penang’s Circuit, Search and Investigation (CSI) 2018 challenge and the winners bagged a total of almost RM100,000 in tuition fee discounts, which they can enjoy after finishing school and joining KDU Penang.
CSI 2018 project director Lee Poh Fen said in the straw tower challenge, the students were given drinking straws and cellophane tape.
“They have to figure out how to construct the tower up to a certain height and then we place three books on top to see if it can hold the weight.“Only two teams didn’t succeed. This showed that most of the students had a fair understanding of physics and engineering,” said Lee.
The challenge was organized by the Engineering Society, which comprised undergraduates from the School of Engineering, Computing and Built Environment of KDU Penang.
Lee said her team of 50 organised the challenge comprising four station games and two final games. The final hurdle, she said, was to write a programme using Arduino software to perform certain hardware functions.
“We found that some of the school students are already familiar with Arduino because they took courses previously. To balance the skill-sets, we gave a half-hour Arduino workshop before the challenge and took the average scores of the participants,” said Lee, who is a year-two electrical and electronics engineering undergraduate in KDU Penang.
She said the other challenges were mental, physical and critical thinking tests related to mathematics and science.
The champion, a four-student team from SMJK Chung Hwa, won RM800 and a 50% cut off the tuition fee of any engineering diploma course at KDU Penang. The first runner-up was a SMJK Chung Ling team, who bagged RM500 and a 30% tuition fee discount, while another team from the same school got the second runner-up placing and won RM300 and a 20% discount. The consolation prize went to a team from Penang Chinese Girls High School, which were RM100 and a 10% tuition fee cut. Develop Asas Dunia and SS Builders sponsored the prizes.
KDU Penang deputy vice-chancellor Dr Brian Imrie presented the prizes.