01 February 2002
New infocomm training partnership to advance Biomedical Sciences research and development IDA and BII join hands to nurture infocomm manpower for an emerging industry
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE SINGAPORE, 1 FEBRUARY 2002 New infocomm training partnership to advance Biomedical Sciences research and development - IDA and BII join hands to nurture infocomm manpower for an emerging industry For the first time, the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) is partnering the BioInformatics Institute (BII) to nuture manpower in the new emerging technology of Grid Computing. This initiative aims to equip trainees with the skills to participate actively in the deployment of cyber-infrastructure to meet the needs of Biomedical Sciences research and development in Singapore. BII is an institute funded by the Biomedical Research Council (BMRC) of the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) Leveraging IDA’s Infocomm Training and Attachment (iTA) Scheme, BII is offering 60 trainees the opportunity to participate in its Grid Computing Training/Attachment Programme. Trainees will receive up to one year of on-the-job training which will include participation in projects, research and development (R&D) and possible overseas exchange experience. Mr Leong Keng Thai, Acting CEO of IDA, said, “Grid Computing has been identified in our Infocomm Technology Roadmap one of the growth areas for the infocomm industry. This partnership with BII will accelerate the training and development of manpower in Grid Computing which is recognised as a key enabling technology for Biomedical Sciences R&D in Singapore.” “This training programme is especially timely in view of the current job market and economic conditions. We encourage fresh graduates and infocomm professionals to take advantage of this opportunity to be trained in new and critical infocomm skills which will pave the way for new employment avenues,” he added. Dr Gunaretnam Rajagopal, Acting Director for BII, said, “The joint training initiative marks a crucial start to a broad-based, demanding and rigorous training programme for a carefully selected group of trainees in all aspects of Grid Computing. We want to deploy the best people to implement, manage and grow the cyber-infrastructure underpinning the BioMedical Grid (BMG)1 in Singapore. This will serve to integrate the Biomedical Sciences R&D activities of the BioPolis2 with academia and related industries in Singapore and overseas.” Training Curriculum The selected trainees for the Grid Computing Training/Attachment Programme will be involved in challenging projects in the areas of high speed networking, telecommunications, High Performance Computing, parallel distributed applications development, cluster computing, security, massive data storage and management, porting and tuning applications3 on various platforms. In particular, computer security will be one of the key focus areas during the one-year training programme due to the sensitivity of Biomedical Sciences data used in research work. The first part of the training will involve eight weeks of intensive lectures, seminars and mini workshops. It will cover a wide spectrum of infocomm topics to equip trainees with the latest skills and knowledge in the emerging technologies of Grid Computing. In the second part, trainees will be given the opportunity to be trained and to interact with various leading academic and key players in the infocomm industry. Dr Guna added, “As part of this training programme, we have made arrangements to invite eminent US scientists in the field of Grid Computing to visit Singapore and share their expertise and experience with the trainees. In addition, after the first two months of training, the trainees will be deployed to project teams both within Singapore as well as overseas for hands-on training.” On successful completion of the programme, outstanding performers may be offered long-term careers with BII or associated research institutes and training organisations. Selection Criteria for Trainees The Grid Computing Training/Attachment Programme is open to all Singaporeans and Permanent Residents with aptitude and interest in applying advanced computing to real world problems. Both fresh graduates as well as infocomm professionals are eligible for the programme. Trainees will be selected from a variety of backgrounds, including: physical sciences, mathematics, computing or computational science and various engineering disciplines. In addition, trainees will be able to enjoy the new, enhanced eligibility criteria for the iTA Scheme. A local company can now qualify to be a sponsoring company4 (previously only multinational corporations based in Singapore can qualify), thus offering trainees more placement opportunities. The iTA Scheme will also support overseas Master of Science (Infocomm) programmes or short-term study programmes in rapidly developing countries such as China. This new direction will allow Singapore’s talent pool to build up a working knowledge of such countries’ modus operandi and a network of contacts in the local infocomm field. Details of the Grid Computing Training/Attachment Programme and application forms can be found at BII’s website at Interested candidates should also look out for the recruitment advertisement which will appear in The Straits Times Recruit Section on Saturday, 2 February 2002. Closing date for application is 20 February 2002. For more details on the iTA Scheme, please refer to the IDA website at, under the section ‘Infocomm Training Schemes’.

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