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UNM student wins National Speak Out for Engineering (SOfE) 2020 competition


Fourth year Mechanical Engineering student, Dhipan Raj Sundram, won the Speak Out for Engineering (SOfE) 2020 competition at the National Level. Dhipan beat 7 other shortlisted finalists on 31 October to emerge as the winner in the nationwide competition. He then went on to represent Malaysia in the Southeast Asian regional competition on 28 November.

SOfE is organised annually by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) for young engineers designed to compete on verbal and visual communication through presentation, explaining an engineering-related subject. The competition take place across the globe, with winners from each university competing at the national level, followed by regional finals and eventually the global finals.

Dhipan’s win at the university-level competition on 5October was followed by an invitation to represent the university at the nationwide competition. He presented the topic of ‘Edge Computing’ in which his speech included the relevance of edge computing, the history, development, applications, pros and cons. A point that very clearly resonated with the judges in the Q&A session was when he replied to the judges’ concerns about the significance of Edge Computing by talking about the current application of the Edge Computing during this COVID-19 pandemic. He mentioned that with the help of MCMC and the funding from Budget 2021, Edge Computing could be deployed across hotspots to do contact tracing based on GPS systems.

The conventional competition is held in-person with participants delivering a 20-minute presentation of their topic followed by a 10-minute Q&A session with a panel of judges. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all stages of the competitions were held online. Participants were required to pre-record a presentation video and send to judges for evaluation. The shortlisted participants were invited to a live Q&A session with the judges and audience on Microsoft Teams. All participants went through the Q&A session in a pre-assigned order after which the winner was announced. The panel of judges were academicians and industry professionals who are experienced in public speaking.

Dhipan said, “I am proud to say that I will be representing Malaysia and University of Nottingham Malaysia in the Southeast Asian leg of the Speak Out for Engineering (SOfE) 2020 competition. From the bottom of my heart, I would like to thank Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) — UNM Student Chapter, IMechE's Malaysian YMS branch, the organisers, my fellow participants, fellow lecturers and last but not least my friends and family who helped, support and prepare me for this competition. I hope to make everyone proud by doing my best in the next stage.”

Dhipan’s prize included a ticket to the regional levels and a cash prize of £300. Next, Dhipan represented Malaysia in next level at the regional finals together with the runner-up, Ammar bin Zoheir from Universiti Tenaga Nasional who presented about ‘Origami-Based Materials’. The regional finals were held on the 28 November 2020 via Microsoft Teams, where a presenter from Singapore emerged as the winner. 


For media enquiries please contact: Josephine Dionisappu, PR and Communications Manager University of Nottingham Malaysia at  

Notes to editors: The University of Nottingham is a research-intensive university with a proud heritage, consistently ranked among the world's top 100. Studying at the University of Nottingham is a life-changing experience and we pride ourselves on unlocking the potential of our 44,000 students - Nottingham was named both Sports and International University of the Year in the 2019 Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide, was awarded gold in the TEF 2017 and features in the top 20 of all three major UK rankings. We have a pioneering spirit, expressed in the vision of our founder Sir Jesse Boot, which has seen us lead the way in establishing campuses in China and Malaysia - part of a globally connected network of education, research and industrial engagement. We are ranked eighth for research power in the UK according to REF 2014. We have six beacons of research excellence helping to transform lives and change the world; we are also a major employer and industry partner - locally and globally.

Posted on 16th December 2020

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