A new SkillsFuture Series of training programmes in eight priority and emerging skills areas has been launched by SkillsFuture Singapore (SSG) to help equip working adults with the skills required across different sectors. This was announced by Mr Ong Ye Kung, Minister for Education (Higher Education and Skills) and Second Minister for Defence, at the launch of the Lifelong Learning Festival 2017.
For a start, the SkillsFuture Series comprises more than 400 courses offered for immediate enrolment, anchored primarily by the Institutes of Higher Learning (IHLs)1. With their deep knowledge base and reputation for high-quality training, the IHLs will take the lead in driving and expanding the range of training programmes in the SkillsFuture Series, complemented by courses offered by high-quality private training providers such as 3dsense and Singapore Media Academy. The course list will be continually expanded by up to three-fold, in consultation with employers, industry partners and the Labour Movement. As a start, the SkillsFuture Series will train 10,000 Singaporeans and will be ramped up over the next three years to benefit 50,000 Singaporeans annually in 2020.
The eight priority and emerging skills areas of the SkillsFuture Series draw reference from the Industry Transformation Maps and feedback from industry partners. Within each of the following eight areas, there will be a curated list of short and modular industry-relevant courses averaging 25 training hours.
i. Data analytics, led by National University of Singapore
ii. Finance, led by Singapore Management University
iii. Tech-enabled Services, led by Singapore University of Social Sciences and Republic Polytechnic
iv. Digital media, led by Nanyang Polytechnic
v. Cybersecurity, led by Singapore University of Technology and Design and Temasek Polytechnic
vi. Entrepreneurship, led by Ngee Ann Polytechnic
vii. Advanced manufacturing, led by Nanyang Technological University and Singapore Polytechnic
viii. Urban Solutions, led by Singapore Institute of Technology and Institute of Technical Education
(More details are available in Annex A.)
To enable individuals to identify relevant courses based on their skills level and career needs, courses under the SkillsFuture Series are tiered across three proficiency levels - basic, intermediate and advanced (See Annex B).
SSG will provide up to 70% course fee subsidy for Singapore Citizens and Singapore Permanent Residents to ensure that the courses in the SkillsFuture Series are affordable. With the subsidy, most of the basic level training programmes (80% of them) will cost less than $500. Singaporeans who qualify for enhanced subsidies, such as the Enhanced Training Support for SMEs or the SkillsFuture Mid-Career Enhanced Subsidy, will also continue to enjoy further subsidies of up to 90% of the course fees. At the 90% enhanced subsidy rate, about 85% of basic level courses will cost less than $200. Additionally, SkillsFuture Credit can be used to offset the balance of the course fees. SSG expects to spend more than $70 million over the first three years on the SkillsFuture Series.
Mr Ng Cher Pong, Chief Executive of SkillsFuture Singapore, said, “Through the SkillsFuture Series, we target to build up a curated list of training programmes in priority and emerging skills. This will facilitate Singaporeans and their employers in making choices about training. The Institutes of Higher Learning (IHLs) will anchor the SkillsFuture Series, and expand their role in Continuing and Education Training (CET). The IHLs bring with them significant strengths and expertise, and will add diversity to the overall CET landscape. Over time, the IHLs will become an important third pillar, complementing the important roles played by employers which provide in-house training and private training providers.”
For more information on the courses, please visit skillsfuture.sg/series
1 In total, there are 12 Institutes of Higher Learning, i.e. six Autonomous Universities, five polytechnics and the Institute of Technical Education.