CYBERJAYA, 26th May – Azad Arsyad bin Zainuddin, a final year Software Engineering student of Universiti Tenaga Nasional (UNITEN) and his team represented Kuala Lumpur as they earned second place in Jom Belajar Koding (JBK) Hackathon 2017, with the theme ‘Transformasi Negara 2050′ (TN50). Organized by Biro Profesional Muda and Pergerakan Pemuda UMNO Malaysia in conjunction with Ministry of Youth and Sports, MaGIC and Aspiring National Leaders Association, the event took place at Malaysian Global Innovation & Creativity Centre (MaGIC), Cyberjaya from 20th May to 21st May 2017. The event was attended by several VIPs, including YB Khairy Jamaluddin, Minister of Youth and Sports, Mr. Ashran Dato’ Ghazi, CEO of MaGIC, Mr. Nazrin Hassan, CEO of Cradle Fund Sdn Bhd, Mr. Ikhwan Nazri, CEO of Amanz Media, Mr. Puvanesan Subenthiran, CEO of Privasia Technology Berhad, Mr. Josh Teng, CEO of Next Academy and Mr. Shahril Hamdan, an executive committee member of Malaysia UMNO Youth Movement.
Workshops and coding sessions were conducted in five separate states throughout Malaysia: Johor, Terengganu, Perak, Melaka and Kuala Lumpur, where the best were handpicked to represent their respected states to participate in the Hackathon. Azad was the only UNITEN student to make it to the national competition. “It makes me sad,” he commented, “I was the only one from UNITEN, when we have so many hidden talents.”
Working together with people of various backgrounds, Azad’s group focused on the medical field, or more specifically, the recycling, reprocessing and reusing of medical equipment. Azad highlighted the wastage of Durable Medical Equipment (DMEs) such as crutches, wheelchairs and canes, which are often abandoned immediately after recovery. “Medical expenses increase every year, and surprisingly its inflation is the highest. What makes it expensive? Because hospitals waste a lot to buy new equipment,” Azad explained enthusiastically, “Currently, if you go to a public hospital, they will tell you that they don’t stock DMEs and they will ask you to purchase them from private businesses such as pharmacies. We are about to change that.”
Suggesting a renting system in which DMEs are returned to the hospital after usage, Azad held high hopes for their victory. “I expected to win (first place) as we were able to relate our idea to TN50 a lot. However, we were unsuccessful as I could not answer questions regarding sustainability of the project very well.”
Nonetheless, their idea managed to catch the eye of Privasia Technology Berhad, a company that looks forward to future collaborations with the team. “I don’t know how to describe my feelings, but generally, I’m motivated,” he stated, hopeful for the future.
When asked for some motivational words to address those who are interested, Azad had a lot to say. “Hackathons might seem scary, but trust me, the most important thing is your idea. Make sure your idea is realistic. Solve a problem that people are willing to submit their credit cards for. Sometimes, they tell you your idea is good, but they won’t actually pay for it. Teamwork is also very important, so choose your people wisely. Mine would be one business major, one developer and one designer. Last but not least, have fun. Do this in your youth. Hackathons are really a shortcut for your startup idea to get up and running because you will be presenting in front of guys with deep pockets.”
We from NADi UNITEN would like to offer a massive round of applause to the team for their great work and achievements throughout the event. We wish you the best of luck for all future pursuits!
Written by: Ahmad Danial ‘Irfan bin Husain
Photo Source: Azad Arsyad bin Zainuddin