Tips to Gain Career Experience, for NUS Students and Rafflesians
by Tan Tze Heng
We have multiple commitments to handle as an NUS student and a Rafflesian. Being an NUS student requires us to deal with academic commitments: assignments after assignments that keep coming in exchange of a degree scroll upon graduation. Being a Rafflesian brings us CCA commitments which, although tiring, can still leave cheerful and memorable experiences to each of us.
However, sometimes these commitments may still not be enough to address some other concerns that certain RHesidents might face: financial support and future job skill equipment. In particular, the latter is what we have to face in the future ultimately, so it’s better to prepare for it early during this university phase anyways.
Here are some tips for you to earn extra money (legitimately) and/or gain future career experience.
1. Apply for a Part-Time Job
If you’re not sure where to start your lobang search, actually NUS itself has already provided a useful platform for us to look for in-campus student part-time jobs. This platform is called NUS Student Work Scheme (NSWS), which lists a diverse range of in-campus part-time job offers offered by various offices, centres, departments or faculties of NUS, including research assistant, student associate and programme assistant facilitator. Check out https://nus.edu.sg/cfg/students/jobs-internships/nsws for more information.
Apart from NSWS, you can also consider self-sourcing for external part-time jobs. There are some useful Telegram channels that regularly post part-time job offers, such as SG Part Time Jobs (https://t.me/SgPartTimeAgency), SG Part Timers (https://t.me/sgparttimers) and SgTuition (https://t.me/SgTuitionAgency). Do check them out if interested.
For international students, do take note of the weekly working duration limit of 16 hours if you’re applying for part-time jobs during semester term. Detailed information can be found in this website: https://www.mom.gov.sg/passes-and-permits/work-pass-exemption-for-foreign-students.
2. Get an Internship
Internship is a pretty useful and even important way of directly exposing ourselves into and getting familiarised with an actual workplace environment. For students of certain majors (e.g. School of Computing majors and Accountancy), internship experience is even a graduation requirement.
There have been various credit-bearing internship programmes or modules available for students of different majors, such as Undergraduate Professional Internship Programme (UPIP, for Science majors, https://www.science.nus.edu.sg/undergraduates/internships/upip/), FASS Internship Programme (FASSIP, for Arts and Social Sciences major, https://fass.nus.edu.sg/career-preparation/internship/fass-internship/) and internship programmes offered by the SoC including ATAP, IIP and SIP (https://www.comp.nus.edu.sg/industry/intern/student/).
NUS TalentConnect (https://nus-csm.symplicity.com/) is also a useful internship platform provided by NUS which allows students to look for credit-bearing and non-credit bearing internship opportunities.
For external self-sourcing internship programmes, besides doing research on your own, you can also check the NUS email inbox for occasional external internship offers sent by NUS.
3. NUS Centre of Future-ready Graduates (CFG) Resources
Often, we are bombarded by invitation and internship offer emails sent to our NUS email inbox by the Centre of Future-ready Graduates (CFG). Even if it feels annoying when we are not interested in those events, when we actually are, these emails can be pretty useful for us to more easily look for potential opportunities to boost our career experiences.
Besides, the official website of NUS CFG (https://nus.edu.sg/cfg/students) also contains a lot of useful information and tips on how to equip ourselves with certain important job skills. In particular, the series of Career-Ready Modules offered by CFG provides useful knowledge about adapting ourselves in a general workforce environment.
4. Take Part in Enrichment Programmes
If you take some time to check your NUS email inbox, you may find a number of invitation emails that offer various external programmes such as case competitions, coding competitions, essay-writing competitions and so on. Other programmes such as Coursera modules and ‘Design Your Own Modules’ are also available.
5. Check out for job plugs from RH community
Occasionally, there may be messages about internship offers, part-time jobs or any career-related opportunities posted from the RH community, say, Mr. Leong’s email. Do keep an eye on them, who knows one day they can actually be useful to you?
Hope you find these suggestions useful in gaining hard and soft skills required for future job hunting. Still, do keep in mind not to overwhelm yourself with too many commitments as your mental well-being is still of utmost priority! Don’t hesitate to quit some commitments if you start to feel overwhelmed. An article in this website that discusses mental wellness may also be worth reading: https://www.thesurhge.com/post/dear-rhesident-how-have-you-been-doing.