Optimistic hiring outlook for 2010

While the economy gradually recovers, there is renewed optimism about hiring in 2010, according to figures released by MOM last week.

By Becky Lo

Hiring picks up

Things are looking good in the first quarter of 2010. Employment has continued to grow strongly by 34,000. This is the third quarterly increase after two quarters of decline in the first half of 2009. While the last quarter of 2009 recorded a slightly higher figure of 37,500, it was mainly a result of the year-end festivities.

Services remain as the main industry that is contributing to the bulk of the employment gains, with an additional 31,200 workers recorded in the first quarter of 2010. Manufacturing also sees an increase of 3,400 workers, a considerable improvement from the 700 recruited last quarter. On the other hand, construction is seeing its first decline after 20 successive quarters of employment gains starting from the first quarter of 2005.

Meanwhile, jobseekers can also look forward to more openings in the finance sector. According to a separate survey done by Robert Half, an international recruitment firm, there is a generally optimistic hiring sentiment among finance-related companies.

Venturing into Real Estate

Find out how enrolling in the Bachelor of Science (Real Estate) degree programme at NUS led to a fulfilling career in real estate for a 26-year-old.

By Stella Seet

The real estate industry is, without a doubt, a paramount sector of the Singapore economy. Not only are real estate transactions mounting rapidly, they also involve increasingly significant sums of money.

For 26-year-old Lim Wenjie, real estate had always been his calling. “I think what most impressive about real estate is that you have the opportunity to see the end product physically around us and how it contributes to redefining the urban landscape. That makes it very special,” Wenjie explains.

He discovered his interest in business and finance when he was but a mere teenager studying at Raffles Junior College. So when he came across the Bachelor of Science (Real Estate) degree programme offered by the National University of Singapore (NUS), Wenjie knew it was the path most suited for him.

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Persistence is key

Juggling work and school was not easy but Petrine Chua talks about how choosing MDIS ensured that her efforts paid off.

By Joyce Lin

Last November, 28-year-old Petrine Chua graduated with a Bachelor of Science (Honours) degree in Marketing from Management Development Institute of Singapore (MDIS), awarded by UK-based University of Bradford. Yet eight years ago, Petrine was doing something entirely different from marketing.

Upon graduation from Ngee Ann Polytechnic with a diploma in Real Estate and Property Management, she worked as a property executive, liaising with contractors, tenants and property owners to ensure the proper management of a building. Fast forward to a few years later and Petrine had made a career switch to sales in a video conferencing company. Her current job as an account manager requires her to ensure customer satisfaction and renewals of the contracts her company has secured.

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Home away from home

Though the challenges were many, the close-knit rapport between faculty members and students went a long way in ensuring that Ivah Sugiarti secured her string of distinctions at the private educational organisation of her choice.

By Prasana Chandran

It may seem like an odd decision to many but halfway through her polytechnic education in 2005, Ivah Sugiarti decided to transfer to TMC, a private educational organisation, to pursue a course of study that lead to a Mass Communication degree. Upon further consideration however, one will realise that the Technology Management and Communication (TMC) Educational Group is partners with a host of top universities both in Australia and the United Kingdom.

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Doing It The British Way

There is a lot more to an international study experience, as two Singaporeans Chan Xin Hui and Chan Cheong Shuen discover during their UK education.

By Cheryl Tay

Going abroad to study has always been viewed as a prestigious opportunity for the rich or the smart. Concerns like overseas living expenses, adaptation to a new culture and potential communication barriers are typical of an overseas education.

But these can be easily addressed and overcome in exchange for a highly-respected internationally-recognised qualification and a higher marketability for employment along with self-developed traits like independence and self-reliance.

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The Waves of Tourism

The benefits of a FIREfly scholarship with STB are bountiful. Scholar Peirui shares about her education and rewarding working experience.

By Nabilah Husna A. Rahman

For four years, Tan Peirui has pursued her interest in the dynamic tourism industry through her scholarship experience with the Singapore Tourism Board (STB). She graduated with a degree in Hospitality Business from the Michigan State University. Her scholarship with STB also allowed her to attain her master’s in Public Administration at the University of Southern California.

“I think when I considered a scholarship back then, I knew I wanted to be in the tourism and hospitality industry,” Peirui enthuses. “At that time, there weren’t a lot of courses in hospitality available – the ones that did were diploma courses, and I wanted a degree in hospitality. Hence the only option was to go overseas.”

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AccURAte Planning

Together with its talented work force, URA strives to continuously enhance Singapore as a great place to live, work and play in.

By Nabilah Husna A. Rahman

The next time you take your usual route to work or to school, observe your surroundings. From ensuring good pedestrian linkages to managing the national conservation programme, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) plans and facilitates Singapore’s physical development in partnership with the community.

As Singapore’s national land use planning and conservation agency, its key vision is to create a vibrant and sustainable city of distinction. Part of this involves being the development agency for Marina Bay, the new city extension.

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NUS University Scholars Programme

The University Scholars Programme (USP) at the National University of Singapore (NUS) is an interdisciplinary academic programme for NUS undergraduates. Involving students from six different faculties and schools at NUS - Arts and Social Sciences, Business, Computing, Design and Environment, Engineering, and Science, USP students are concurrently enrolled in one of these faculties or schools (their home faculty) and at the USP. They earn 30% of their academic credits in the USP, and 70% in their home faculty or school. Upon successful completion of USP requirements and an honours programme, USP students graduate with an honours degree from their faculty or school, and a certificate that recognises them as University Scholars.

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Flying High with SIA

Securing an SIA scholarship and an opportunity to work for the airline is something that many dream of achieving. In the volatile and massive aviation industry, one needs versatility and an open mind to survive. Two SIA scholars tell us all.

By Cheryl Tay

When he first entered junior college, Anand Chandran took a triple science subject combination to keep his future study options open. He was leaning towards studying medicine at that time, but towards the end of his days in Raffles Junior College, Anand was not prepared to commit to a five-year medicine course. He then made the decision to study economics instead.

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New scholarship for the curious

Professor Winston Koh, programme director of the USP@SMU, tells us more about the new scholarship programme to be launched this August.

By Joyce Lin

In his seven years’ of teaching at Singapore Management University (SMU), Professor Winston Koh, who teaches economics and finance modules there, took into consideration the feedback from some of his top students. The current Interim Dean of SMU’s School of Social Sciences says, “Many of our top students are capable of doing a lot more. They want to be challenged to do more than what is available to them in the curriculum. That was the starting point.”

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