Guest lectures take centre stage at Curtin Malaysia’s Civil and Environmental Engineering Research Conference

Miri – 18 December 2023 – The Department of Civil and Construction Engineering at Curtin University Malaysia (Curtin Malaysia) successfully held its highly anticipated Sixth Civil and Environmental Engineering Research Conference (CEERC) recently.

The event, tailored for the department’s final-year students to present their final-year projects and discuss the latest developments in the civil engineering and environmental engineering fields, showcased an enriching array of insights, with online guest lectures by industry experts emerging as the undeniable highlights.

Professionals and experts in the fields delivered engaging and thought-provoking online guest lectures. They shared their wealth of knowledge, providing invaluable perspectives on the latest advancements, challenges, and innovations in civil engineering and environmental engineering.

The guest lectures, curated to inspire the next generation of engineers, covered a spectrum of topics ranging from sustainable infrastructure development to cutting-edge technologies shaping the future of the industry. The students, poised at the threshold of their careers, had the unique opportunity to interact directly with these experts, gaining real-world insights that complement their academic pursuits.

Eric Tan, Senior Corporate and Business Manager of United Tec Construction Pte. Ltd., a leading Singapore-based specialist PPVC (Prefabricated Precast Volumetric Construction) contractor, delivered a captivating lecture on PPVC, a form of modular construction which is seeing increasing use in Singapore and Malaysia.

Tan spoke extensively about the challenges of constructing the landmark Avenue South Residence project in Singapore, the world’s tallest modular building. A residential development comprising of two 56-storey towers and five blocks of four-storey heritage restoration and modernisation properties offering a total of 1,074 residential units, the project is a marvel of modular construction.

According to Head of the Department of Civil and Construction Engineering, Associate Professor Wong Kwong Soon, the students benefitted greatly from Tan’s guest lecture as it was very relevant to their modular construction capstone projects undertaken in their Integrated Structural Design (ISD) unit earlier this year.

Associate Professor Wong said that the students’ projects were entered in the prestigious Fleetwood Challenge Cup in Australia, a team challenge designed to discover the next generation of young built environment design professionals that will help to propel the construction industry into an innovative future.

Each year select universities are invited to participate in the competition, with students from each university representing the Architectural, Engineering, Construction Management and other AEC (Architecture, Engineering and Construction) design streams forming collaborative and cross-disciplinary teams. Curtin Malaysia civil engineering students Alan Poon Tik Loon, Tan Jia Qi and Forrest Tiong Ing Poh partnered with a postgraduate architecture student from Curtin University in Perth to bag second prize and an industry award in the competition.

Ambun Dindang, Deputy Director General (Strategic and Technical) of the Malaysian Meteorology Department (METMalaysia) and a member of the Faculty of Engineering and Science’s industrial advisory panel for Environmental Engineering, was the second guest lecturer. He highlighted the issue of ozone depletion and the ozone monitoring activities carried out by the Department in Malaysia, which are closely related to what the students are studying in their environmental engineering programme.

The success of the guest lectures has reinforced Curtin Malaysia’s commitment to providing a holistic education that extends beyond the classroom. The campus, Curtin University’s largest global campus located in Miri, Sarawak, remains steadfast in its dedication to preparing students for the dynamic and evolving engineering landscape.

Curtin Malaysia offers Curtin’s Bachelor of Engineering in Civil and Construction Engineering, which equips students with the knowledge and skills to apply scientific and technological principles to the design and construction of various types of infrastructure. The Bachelor of Engineering in Environmental Engineering, meanwhile, provides a broad scope of environmental engineering, including water treatment, solid waste management, and domestic and industrial wastewater treatment. Both are four-year honours courses double-accredited by Engineers Australia (EA) and the Board of Engineers Malaysia (BEM).

For more information on Curtin Malaysia, visit or look for Curtin Malaysia on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn or TikTok.

The three Curtin Malaysia students (2nd – 4th left) who were in the team that placed second in the Fleetwood Challenge Cup with Assoc Prof Wong and other academic staff.

United Tec Construction’s Eric Tan

Ambun Dindang of METMalaysia