SPRINGing into life on a SPRING-FIREfly Scholarship

Nabbing a scholarship with SPRING Singapore is not something everyone can boast about. Yvette shares more about her journey through the thick and thin of her scholarship adventure.

By Kevin Lim

Job searches are funny events. When we’re studying, most of us seemingly already know which organisation we’ll be working for, two, three or even five years down the road. The same “most of us” usually end up somewhere totally unexpected, our bolted mindsets swayed by the most innocuous of circumstances.

Yvette Chua, a strong-willed and independent 22-year-old FIREfly scholar, is no different.

Yvette admitted to not knowing much about SPRING Singapore when she first considered a FIREfly scholarship. Nonetheless, during a FIREfly scholarship talk, a representative scholar of SPRING shared earnestly about his journey in the organisation. This left her so impressed with SPRING, and intrigued with its work in the SMEs sector, that she set her sights on it as an organisation to work for.

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Keep the Dream Alive

If a scholarship that goes beyond the usual package intrigues you, then SPRING’s Executive Development Scholarship may be just what you’re looking for!

By Lim Yan Wen

Be Your Own Boss
From her bright smile to her rapid fire chatter, Arvinder Kaur’s enthusiasm for knowledge, life and creativity is contagious. The 20-year-old is among the batch of 45 scholars that SPRING Singapore welcomed with open arms in June 2009.

Arvinder had seen posters promoting the Executive Development Scholarship (EDS) on the campus of the National University of Singapore (NUS), where she is currently pursuing a degree in Sociology. The EDS’s tagline, “Be Your Own Boss”, caught her attention because of the sense of empowerment these simple words gave her.

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SPRING: Enabling Enterprises

Fuelled by her love for Business Management, Charlotte shares how her work at SPRING helps to develop local enterprises.

By Lim Yan Wen

Clad in a fitting black jacket complete with heels that exude confidence, Charlotte Lin is in her element when she enthuses about her work in SPRING Singapore. “I've always wanted to work in businesses, or anything related to business and marketing,” Charlotte says.

The 25-year-old, who has worked with SPRING for close to three years, is now a Manager who holds concurrent appointments in Retail and the International Partnership Office (Europe) (IPO). Armed with a degree in Business Management from the Singapore Management University (SMU), Charlotte has a double major in Marketing and Corporate Communications.

This academic combination has prepared her well for her work with SPRING today. Besides accumulating classroom knowledge, Charlotte gained invaluable networking skills and knowledge through overseas exchange and immersion stints in Sweden's Lund University and Switzerland’s St Gallen University, as well as a business study mission trip to Silicon Valley in the United States.

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SPRING: A SPRINGboard for Business

A career at SPRING is the ideal platform for introducing you to the world of business and entrepreneurism.

By Tan Yan Shuo

Imagine you are taking a walk at midnight, and you spot two people playing tennis in the dark. What is the first thought that creeps into your mind?

“It immediately struck me as a business opportunity!” shares SPRING scholar Chew San Lee. “I went back to research on whether there is a market for glow-in-the-dark tennis balls, and I realised that there are a lot of people who want such a product.”

Palpably, San Lee lives and breathes business, and admits that her dreams were sparked by the business endeavours of her father.

Shaping dreams
“My father works in a biscuit company. Biscuits don’t seem like something creative, but I saw how my father innovated to create biscuits nobody else could think of. That was really inspirational to me,” San Lee recounts.

Fellow scholar Ng Wee Leong shares similar sentiments. “My dad runs his own renovation contracting business, helping HDB and private houses do renovation work. However, he wasn’t very successful in the later years, because he didn’t move up the value chain in time after HDB started pushing out premium flats, and there was very little need for renovation contractors. This made me have a keen interest in business development, how businesses work, how different types of businesses run, why some succeed, and why some don’t.”

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FIREfly-SPRING: Fuelling Growth

For one FIREfly scholar, a career at SPRING has opened many doors of opportunities – from an enriching overseas education experience to a challenging and fulfilling career.

By Lui Wen Qing

Kenrick Guo’s career at SPRING Singapore has seen him take on three different roles so far, involving two departments within SPRING and a secondment to a financial services company in the private sector.

This opportunity to be rotated among different agencies, departments, and even the private sector was the main reason why Kenrick chose the FIREfly scholarship despite having received other scholarship offers. The Raffles Institution (Junior College) alumnus says, “I valued having such diverse experiences that could give me a deep variety of breadth.”

In particular, he chose SPRING amongst other agencies under the FIREfly scholarship programme because he wanted to do something related to business, and being able to work with SMEs greatly appealed to him.

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FIREfly(SPRING) - Grow, Glow and Globalise

Growing from strength to strength, Joy Koh has carved out a dynamic and fulfilling career promoting entrepreneurship and enterprise development in Singapore. Eloquent and driven, the self-starter began her journey with a SPRING scholarship.

By Azhar Jalil

Candidate description
Joy Koh
FIREfly Scholar (SPRING Singapore)
Designation: Head, Management Development, Enterprise Capabilities Group, SPRING Singapore
Studied: Electrical Engineering, Cornell University
Master’s in Electrical Engineering, Cornell University

”It was the diversity that attracted me,” says Joy Koh. “When I was looking at the different scholarships, I felt SPRING had the diversity, the flexibility within the company where I knew I would have the opportunity to try out different things.”

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