About 4,500 individuals and about 1,100 companies have benefitted from work-study programmes since the the first work-study programme, i.e. the SkillsFuture Earn and Learn Programme (ELP), was launched in 2015. To allow more individuals and companies to benefit from such opportunities, the Institutes of Higher Learning (IHLs) will expand their existing work-study programmes, and launch new work-study degree and post-graduate programmes.
These developments were announced by Minister for Education, Mr Ong Ye Kung, at the Work-Learn Carnival held at Nanyang Polytechnic today. The Carnival is part of the six-week long SkillsFuture Festival.
Progress and Expansion of Work-Study Programmes
a) SkillsFuture Earn and Learn Programmes
As of June 2019, the total number of fresh polytechnic and ITE graduates who have benefitted from ELPs has grown from 150 in 2015 to about 4,200, of which 400 were placed in the ITE Work-Learn Technical Diploma Programme. The number of employers participating in the ELP has grown from 46 in 2015 to about 1,000. The number of ELPs has also increased from 15 across 12 sectors in 2015 to 123 across 34 sectors.
SSG has worked with the IHLs and employers to introduce 15 new ELPs this year in sectors such as Infocomm Technology and Advanced Manufacturing. These will enable polytechnic and ITE graduates to tap on new opportunities in emerging and growing sectors, and support companies in meeting their manpower needs in these areas. Please refer to Annex A for the full list of new ELPs.
The polytechnics and ITE will also be enhancing the on-the-job-training (OJT) component of the programme, by adopting rubrics developed by the National Centre of Excellence for Workplace Learning (NACE) to certify new OJT blueprints from ELP participating companies. Please refer to Annex B for more information.
b) SkillsFuture Work-Study Degree Programme
To-date, the SkillsFuture Work-Study Degree Programme (WSDP) has enrolled about 150 university students, with about 30 companies on-board the programme.
To enable more university graduates to benefit from the programme, the Autonomous Universities (AUs) will expand the number of WSDPs from 16 to 22. The Nanyang Technological University (NTU) will offer six new WSDPs in areas such as Data Science, Artificial Intelligence, and Business Analytics. This is in addition to the 16 WSDPs currently offered by the National University of Singapore (NUS), Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT), and Singapore University of Social Sciences (SUSS).
c) SkillsFuture Work-Learn Bootcamp
Launched in 2018, the SkillsFuture Work-Learn Bootcamp will be expanded to include two new job roles – Engineer 4.0 and Customer Service Associate.
The Engineer 4.0 job role will train participants in areas of demand such as Lean Manufacturing, Industrial Internet of Things, and Agile Project Management. Participants will have the opportunity to take on engineering jobs, including Industry 4.0 Research & Development, Digital Transformation Engineer and Performance Improvement Engineer, upon completion of the bootcamp. The programme will be delivered by Singapore Polytechnic and Temasek Polytechnic, and the first run will commence in Q4 2019.
The Customer Service Associate job role will equip participants with skills such as adaptive communication, brand storytelling, and identifying customers’ needs. Participants will have the opportunity to take on jobs such as Customer Service Associate, Lounge Associate and Beauty Advisor. The programme will be delivered by ITE, and will commence in Q4 2019.
Please refer to Annex C for more information on the two new job roles.
New Work-Study Programmes – Undergraduate Degree and Postgraduate by Research
To further expand work-study opportunities, the IHLs will launch a new through-train work-study programme, leading from a full-time diploma to a WSDP. Students will have a seamless integrated pathway that allows for a longer and more effective workplace learning stint with the same employer. Companies can also benefit through a longer engagement with the trainees, and better plan for the deployment and progression of their trainees. With the integration of the diploma and degree course requirements, students participating in the programme may be able to obtain their degree up to 12 months faster.
For a start, Temasek Polytechnic will introduce two programmes for the Building Services and Mechatronics sectors in collaboration with SUSS and SIT respectively in April 2020. More programmes will be launched progressively. Please refer to Annex D for more information on the new through-train work-study programme.
SIT will also introduce new postgraduate work-study programmes in 2020. This includes an Industrial Doctorate Programme and an Industrial Master Programme. The Industrial Doctorate and Industrial Master programmes will strengthen the industry-academia interaction and build Singapore’s pipeline for industry-relevant professionals with deep technical knowledge and specialisation skills.
Individuals in these programmes will spend time working on industry projects in their companies while completing postgraduate modules and complementary applied research work in SIT. These two programmes will be the SIT’s first Postgraduate by Research programmes.