The recognition of Utechtium, the first startup company by Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), Malaysia, as a training provider for Safety and Health Officers (SHO) for the occupational safety and health course program by YB Datuk Seri M Saravanan, the Malaysian Minister of Human Resources on 9th July 2020 was a great honour for Prof Ir Ts Dr Ahmad Asari Sulaiman. Utechtium, was founded by Dr. Ahmad Asari, in 2016 with an aim to provide the course to add value to graduates through certificates of competency recognized by the industry under the Department of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH).
This recognition is very important to UiTM, as it is one of the earliest universities to be given such recognition in the country. In 2012, the Safety and Health Officer (SHO) certificate was offered by UiTM and was listed as the first to be brought by the Institute of Higher Learning (IHL) as a value-added certificate to increase the marketability of Faculty of Electrical Engineering (FKE) UiTM graduates. After 2012, an increase in marketability occurred as the industry began to recognize FKE graduates who obtained the value-added certificate. This certification is also offered to UiTM graduates from the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Faculty of Civil Engineering and Faculty of Chemical Engineering. This SHO Certificate has also been introduced to other IHLs.
At the early stage in 2012, Prof Ir Ts Dr Ahmad Asari received RM1.025 Million Marketability Grant from MOHE to provide this certificate to 250 UiTM graduates. This recognition has listed UiTM as an institution which conducts courses for Occupational Safety and Health Officers just like National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), CONSIST Training Centre and other Safety Training Centres. When UiTM first started in 2012 these courses had to be outsourced to training provider services, but since July 2020, UiTM is able conduct their own courses. This highly recognized, value-added certificate will enhance the career and employability opportunities of UITM graduates; besides they can pursue this certificate at a lower cost. According to Occupational Safety and Health Act 1994, an institution with more than 500 employees must have at least one SHO officer, even in the education and health sector. Therefore, employment opportunities for graduates with SHO certificates and green book holders will be a great advantage. UiTM’s recognition as SHO training provider will allow UiTM to increase the marketability of its graduates.