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National Fintech Codeathon to address financial technology issues

KOTA KINABALU, 3 JANUARY 2022: An upcoming hackathon will see young people putting their critical thinking abilities to the test to find practical solutions to financial technology-related problems.

Organised by the student association of Universiti Malaysia Sabah’s Faculty of Computing and Informatics (FCI), the National Fintech Codeathon themed Financial Technology (Fintech) focuses on achieving Sustainable Development Goal 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth, which entails addressing real-world Fintech issues.

The Codeathon hopes to attract 75 university students and public members to stimulate their creative thinking. It will take place from February 19 to 22.

“All participants are expected to help with the economic growth in our country where more technology is implemented in financial activities, and everyone is encouraged to use cashless transactions.

“Therefore, the skills they will get from this event will undoubtedly benefit them in their future careers,” said programme director Abdul Hafiz Gani.

Abdul Hafiz Gani

Representing the FCI, Abdul Hafiz said critical thinking skills are essential in today’s world as new challenges arise with new inventions.

“This is where young people’s skills are needed because they will be running the system in the future. We hope that the participants’ skills will improve as a result of this programme, as they will be solving real-world problems,” he added.

To make the programme successful, UMS’s FCI collaborates with the Sabah Creative Economy and Innovation Centre (SCENIC) – a state government agency aimed to accelerate industries in Sabah through entrepreneurship, technology, innovation and creativity.

By organising the National Fintech Codeathon, SCENIC’s programme specialist and community builder Fazlan Thomas said they hope financial technology-related programmes can be developed to help drive the industry in Sabah.

“Given the lack of hackathons in Sabah, we hope to see this programme be made an annual event to garner more attention for its impact, particularly in catalyzing and enhancing soft skills among participants.

“The challenges that young people or graduates will face in their workplace are inevitable. The knowledge obtained from their higher education can be applied in their jobs, but a career does not guarantee that the knowledge we study can be adapted.

“Therefore, students must push themselves to be more creative and innovative in their pursuit of additional knowledge. With today’s technological advancements and easy accessibility, learning something new is not impossible,” he said.

He stated programmes like the National Fintech Codeathon are critical in encouraging participants to develop solutions that others have never considered.

Fazlan Thomas

Fazlan said participants’ contributions did not end with the programme, stressing SCENIC’s role is to help develop and accelerate the idea of financial technology in line with the programme’s aims in achieving Sustainability Development Goal 8: Decent Work And Economic Growth.

“If there is a solution that can be commercialized and improved in assisting financial technology in Sabah or Malaysia, SCENIC has the responsibility to guide them (participants) to go far,” he said.

Apart from SCENIC, UMS’s FCI also collaborates with Computer Science Student Associations from other universities, namely COMSSA UPM, PERTEKMA UNIMAS, and I-TECH UUM, as well as Microsoft, FinTech Associations of Malaysia, Multimedia Development Corporation, PayHalal, and Printcious.

Online registration for the Codeathon will open on January 3 at https://scenic.my/nfc2022. The prize money for the winners will be RM1500 (1st place), RM1000 (2nd place), and RM500 (3rd place).

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