Mr. Zaw Htut Aung

Student
Mechanical Engineering, Technological University Mandalay

Hello,My name is Zaw Htut Aung but I want you to call me Katone as my close friend do. I am currently studying mechanical engineering at Technological University Mandalay, Myanmar and working part-time as a content writer for Myanmar Youth Empowerment Opportunities (MYEO) to provide information and professional development opportunities for young people across Myanmar and around the world to further their potential and to expand their education and career horizon. I am interested in programming and machine design is my favorite subject. I have always wanted to be an engineer since I was young and I believe dedication and devotion in STEM will lead to creating smart and sustainable community by reflecting our affection to our global generation.

STEM SKILL GAPS IN MYANMAR

Abstract: As a developing country, STEM skills are indispensable to Myanmar and what the country needs to achieve democratically and economically. Today, there are more than 30 universities of Engineering and Technology in Myanmar but good engineers are still in great demand to build basic infrastructure and the country’s technology base economy. There are several challenges that weaken the STEM skills. First, there are three ways to become an engineer in Myanmar (1) going to a private university with sizeable fees, (2) joining a technical high school (THS) after elementary education then continue in a government technological university (GTU) and (3) directly going to GTU after high school graduation. Not all students are offered to study specialized major that they apply for as each major requires different marks in matriculation exam. Some universities are located in city outskirts and with limited dormitories, many students are not able to join after school activities. Poor infrastructure and engineering equipment, such as research centers and laboratories lead to students doing less experiments and fewer engineering practices. This was a challenge what I faced during my previous internship. Lastly, reference books are written in English and it is becoming a language barrier for students who do not speak good English. For me, translating Hour of Code lessons is what I have been trying to do to address this challenge. There are also limited opportunities to overcome the above challenges. I will present how these challenges are being addressed by the students. And I want to hear different approaches through this discussion.