July 15, 2024

Written by Dr Farah Zaini

In an inspiring collaboration between Grab Malaysia, Open Street Map (OSM), and the Development Planning and Management Programme of the Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities (FSSH) at Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (UNIMAS), the Grab GeoStars x UNIMAS 2024 programme has successfully equipped students with crucial map editing skills and practical applications of these technologies.

OSM editing in the Computer Lab, FSSH

Running from May to June 2024, the programme focused on developing students’ technical abilities in map editing using the OSM and Map Your City (MYC) platforms. Participants were tasked with improving data accuracy and contributions to these platforms, fostering a spirit of healthy competition and excellence. To enhance the value of their learning, participation in this programme was also part of the assessment for the course SSR2093: Introduction to Remote Sensing, integrating practical skills with academic learning.

Before they began with their tasks, participants received comprehensive online training. The first training on OSM Data Improvement was led by Mr. Mikko Tamura from OSM Philippines. This session provided students with the skills needed to enhance OSM data. The second training, i.e. MYC Data Input, was conducted by Ms. Shafiqah Zaini from Grab Malaysia, and the session focused on the specifics of inputting data into the MYC platform. After that, participants were given two weeks to complete all the tasks.

Participants with FSSH lecturers, Grab Malaysia and OSM

The closing ceremony for the Grab GeoStars x UNIMAS 2024 programme was held on June 20, 2024. The momentous occasion was attended by representatives from Grab HQ, Ms Maryam Abu Bakar and Mr Haziq Ekhwan, and representative from OSM, Mr Ahmad Kamal Effendy. The ceremony celebrated the students’ achievements, announcing the winners based on the accuracy and volume of their data submissions. Selected participants shared their experiences and challenges, offering valuable insights into their learning journey.

Representatives from OSM and Grab provided feedback on the students’ editing skills, highlighting areas of excellence and suggesting opportunities for further development. The event also featured a knowledge transfer session and a Karta Cam demonstration by two invited Grab drivers, Mr Maizun and Mr Azmi, adding practical industry perspectives to the celebration.

Students’ feedback on the programme was overwhelmingly positive. Maximilian Majoi anak Marcus Linggie shared that the Grab GeoStar programme helped him gain a deeper understanding of mapping routes for Grab drivers and riders, and he was able to assist Grab in updating locations in his area. Rebeca Nawi anak Angas noted that through the programme, she gained new and very useful knowledge for the future, emphasizing that this valuable skill is not widely known among job seekers. Micheal Maya bin Johnson expressed his happiness, stating that this was his first experience working on mapping-related tasks.

Dr. Farah Zaini, the programme manager, noted, “This program exposed students to editing skills for Open Street Map and Map Your City, and at the same time, provided insights into how they are used in the real world. Students gained new knowledge and also had the opportunity to share that knowledge with others.”

Ms. Maryam Abu Bakar from Grab Malaysia added, “The dedication shown by students and this experience has left us buzzing, and we trust the shared knowledge will enrich your learning journey and future endeavors.”

The Grab GeoStars x UNIMAS 2024 programme is a testament to the power of collaboration between academia and industry. By equipping students with relevant skills and knowledge, we are preparing them to effectively contribute to their respective fields and face future challenges with confidence.

Enthusiasts’ participants of Grab GeoStars X UNIMAS 2024

Note: Development Planning and Management Programme (UW6345001) is one of the undergraduate programmes offered by the Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities (FSSH), UNIMAS. More info about the programme and application process in our website: https://www.fssh.unimas.my/

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