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Education News Bulletin (June 2020)

Tue, 07/07/2020 Zhou Mei An
Education News Bulletin (June 2020)

The current situation has affected universities and scholarships, as e-learning takes centre stage and many graduates chose local universities over foreign ones. Other news includes:


BMX Racer overcomes disability to win SOF-Peter Lim scholarships

National BMX racer Mas Ridzwan Mohammad Ali can do anything on a bike, but struggled with learning due to his dyslexia. His stellar potential saw him win the Singapore Olympic Foundation-Peter Lim scholarship in the Under-18 high performance category last month, for the second year running. He had also been awarded twice in the secondary category. The $5,000 boost will help him adapt to training amid the coronavirus pandemic, which has prevented him and his teammates from having their practice sessions at a mini-pump track in Bukit Timah.


Students unhappy with paying overseas school fees for online classes taken locally

As universities moved their classes online, some students have spoken frankly about their disappointment about being unable to waive or refund school fees. Others worry about how classes and activities will be affected in the coming terms, as school activities and neighbourhoods remain closed.


Latest university rankings released

The Quacquarelli Symonds' list saw NUS stay in 11th place globally while NTU slipped to 13th. The rankings uses indicators including research impact, faculty-student ratio and how the university is regarded by other academics and employers. It also weighs to the proportion of international students and faculty, which is used as an indication of a university's ability to attract talent from across the world. However, some have questioned the validity and need for this year’s rankings, as universities should prioritise supporting students and faculty through Covid-19 rather than “chase numbers”.


Organisations plan to offer scholarships as before, slight drop in interest in overseas scholarships due to Covid-19

Sponsoring organisations have announced that there will be no change to scholarship offerings, despite greater pressures on public spending and companies' bottom lines due to Covid-19. However, more local study options are now open given global uncertainties.

However, companies added that while their criteria as a whole will generally remain unchanged, the pandemic has made certain skills and qualities more attractive. For example, Changi Airport Group (CAG) said that having agility and intellectual curiosity, specifically in the area of data and technology, has come to the forefront.


Student loan repayments suspended temporarily for graduates

The Ministry of Education (MOE) has suspended the repayment and interest for all study loans for a year, to give graduates "peace of mind" during their job search, said Minister for Education Ong Ye Kung.

He also moved to reassure graduates that measures are in place for their introduction into the workforce, as institutes of higher learning will offer two to four Continuing Education and Training (CET) modules free of charge to graduates who decide to delay their entry into the job market and employers are still willing to hire for SGUnited Traineeships.


Lion City Sailors Nurture Young Talents

Lion City Sailors (LCS), Singapore’s first privatised football club, has launched a $1 million scholarship programme to nurture the country’s young football talents. The four-year Elite Development Programme will cover costs incurred during the course of training, insurance and apparel, with overseas camps and tournaments subsidised at 50%, with the possibility of additional cash allowances.


Photo by Markus Winkler on Unsplash

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