APU Students Gain Insights Into The World of Manufacturing at Canon Opto Malaysia

Valuable learning experience and valuable insights into manufacturing industry and career opportunities for APU students.

A group of 29 Asia Pacific University of Technology and Innovation (APU) Master’s and Bachelor’s Degree students recently visited the Canon Opto (Malaysia) Sdn. Bhd. in Shah Alam, Selangor.

The trip was part of the School of Marketing and Management’s (SoMM) industrial visit programme, which aims to expose students to real-world working situations so that they may blend classroom theories and knowledge.

Senior lecturers, Dr. Song Bee Lian and Dr. Tee Poh Kiong, chose Canon Opto because it is well-known for its EF lenses and optical lenses for digital cameras, and it employs over 1,500 people at its Hicom Industrial Estate facility. 

“The trip aimed to provide an opportunity for APU students to see and experience real workstations, plants, machines, technologies, systems, assembly lines, and interact with highly trained and experienced personnel,” Dr. Song explained.

Dr. Tee continued, “The students learn about Canon Opto’s systems and policies in terms of production, quality, and environment management.

From left, Ms. Rohayu Sahit presented a souvenir to APU representative Dr. Tee Poh Kiong, who was accompanied by Dr. Song Bee Lian.

Ms. Rohayu Sahit, Canon Opto Manager, and her colleagues from the General Affairs and Security Department welcomed and introduced Canon Opto to APU lecturers and students.   

The students were then taken on a tour of the facility, where they saw the Canon gallery, SMT metal processing plant, water treatment plant, and waste treatment facilities, as well as the processing of digital camera parts using state-of-the-art machinery and robotics. 

The activities at the water treatment plant included water extraction from the ground and wastewater remediation for manufacturing use. The waste treatment facilities included chemical and decomposing daily food waste from the staff canteen to be recycled into fertile soil.

They learned about the different stages of production as well as the quality control methods in place. The students were also able to interact with Canon employees, who shared their insights into the world of manufacturing.

The students considered the visit to be highly informative and insightful, and they noticed that it improved their understanding of the manufacturing process and the challenges that manufacturers face, while also inspiring them with the enthusiasm and commitment of the Canon personnel.

The activities and processes at the SMT metal processing plant were explained in detail to APU students by Canon experts.

As a result, the industrial visit provided the students with significant learning opportunities. It helped them bridge the gap between classroom theory and hands-on practice and gave them a greater understanding of the numerous job opportunities available in the industrial sector.

Leonard Lam Ee-Sun, a first-year Master of Business Administration student, considered his industrial visit as an educational journey that helped him learn how Canon manages its daily manufacturing process while also achieving sustainability. 

“It was particularly intriguing to learn that Canon practices zero waste by transforming leftover daily meals from their staff lunch into useable soil for planting, retreat wastewater, and chemical.
“I am currently studying the Marketing Sustainability module at APU, and I am able to apply the theoretical elements learned in class to the practical real-world context. Overall, these knowledges were useful for me to apply in my future work on how to practice sustainability in order to fulfil Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),” he said.

Tan Peng Teck from the Bachelor of Computer Science programme pointed out that the factory visit to Canon was beneficial because it exposed APU students to better knowledge on contemporary robotic automation, which is currently playing a big role in the manufacturing industry.
 From left, Dr. Song Bee Lian accompanied three Master's students, Rubina Pradhan, Leonard Lam Ee-Suen, and Abdirisak Idiris Ahmed, as they observed the processes and facilities used in water extraction from the ground and wastewater retreat for manufacturing usage at Canon Opto.

“Although we often heard about robotic automation in the news, having the opportunity to witness how robotic automation works with our own eyes has provided valuable experiential learning. 

“It also provided us with reflection in the aspect of innovation improvement, specifically on the innovation processes needed in the manufacturing industry to achieve efficiency improvement,” he said.

Hillarius Gilbert Widjaja, a final-year student who focuses on International Business Management, described his first industrial visit as “very impressive”, referring to the level of automation in the factory, as well as the state-of-the-art machines and robotics used to manufacture Canon’s products, as “extraordinary technological advances”.

“The use of this technology helps in the improvement of production efficiency and product quality. The possibility to connect directly with plant managers was beneficial in gaining a deeper understanding of the manufacturing processes. 

“I gained a deep understanding of the complex manufacturing process and how Canon strives to produce high-quality products while remaining efficient and environmentally responsible,” he said.