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Curtin University of Technology
Media Releases 2012

Curtin Sarawak Civil and Construction Engineering Department organises site visits in Kuching

Miri – 27 April 2012 - The Department of Civil and Construction Engineering of Curtin University, Sarawak Malaysia (Curtin Sarawak) recently organised visits to several sites of engineering significance in Kuching.

A total of 38 Civil and Construction Engineering students in their second, third and fourth years of study at Curtin Sarawak flew to Kuching from Miri, where the Curtin Sarawak campus is located, for the site visits from 9 to 10 April 2012.

On 9 April, the students viewed the proposed Sungai Tabuan and Ithmus bridges. At the Ithmus Bridge site, the students were briefed on the The Ithmus project and learned more about bridge design, particularly construction sequences and techniques, which proved extremely useful to the students.

The students also visited the wastewater treatment plant of the Kuching Centralised Sewerage System and were impressed with the complex retrofitting works required to implement the system around the city as well as the deep collection shaft of the activated sludge-based treatment plant, which was almost 30 metres deep.

The following day, they visited the Kuching Water Board’s Batu Kitang Water Treatment Plant, where they were given a tour of the facilities as well as a briefing on the technical aspects of water treatment and supply. The tour included viewing the Dissolved Air Flotation (DAF) system that separates solids from the water at Batu Kitang.

The final stop on the trip was the Kuching Barrage and Shiplock. The students were fortunate enough to watch the shiplock, through which vessels pass through from the Sarawak River to the sea and vice versa, in action. Staff there also briefed them on the design, operation and maintenance aspects of the massive and unique hydraulic structure.

Overall, the students found the visits to be real eye-openers and having enriched their experience as student engineers.

Lee Chee Soon, a third-year student, remarked, “The trip was really enjoyable and a good opportunity for us to view real-life examples of civil engineering applications. Take the Kuching Centralised Wastewater Treatment Plant, for example. We had studied about wastewater treatment but could not appreciate its complexity until we saw it.”

Lee added that the trip helped to foster good relationships between students, as well as with their lecturers.

“We learned more about each other, and knowing each other better will lead to better teamwork and cooperation in the future,” he said.

The students were accompanied by lecturers Associate Professor Lau Hieng Ho, Carrie Ho and Dr. Moussa Leblouba, as well as the head of the Department of Civil and Construction Engineering, Dr. Tang Fu Ee.

The Department of Civil and Construction Engineering regularly organises site visits for its students so that they can witness the practical and real-life applications of the theories and principles learned in their course. Student exposure to industry practice is an integral aspect of their course.

The Civil and Construction Engineering programme at Curtin Sarawak is a four-year honours programme fully accredited by the Board of Engineers Malaysia (BEM) and Engineers Australia (EAust), the governing professional engineering bodies of Malaysia and Australia.

The programme has produced over 60 graduates since its inception and its graduates are highly sought after by engineering consultancies and companies in Malaysia and abroad.

Information on the Civil and Construction Engineering programme can be found at soes.curtin.edu.my/civil-construction-engineering/.  For more information on Curtin Sarawak, visit its website at www.curtin.edu.my, call +60 85 443 939, or e-mail enquiries@curtin.edu.my. Curtin Sarawak can also be found on Facebook at www.facebook.com/CurtinUniversitySarawakMalaysia.


The students at the Kuching Centralised Sewerage System wastewater treatment plant.


The students in the Kuching Barrage control tower.