The OCBC Scholarship Programme is grounded on the belief that every outstanding student deserves the opportunity to have a university education, regardless of his or her family circumstances.
While many scholarships require graduating scholars to go on to serve bonds at their sponsoring organisations, the OCBC scholarship is bond-free. OCBC Scholars can make their own career choices, and are free to follow their own dreams and passion. Many OCBC scholars today are doctors, lawyers, teachers, engineers and musicians.
OCBC Bank actively seeks well-rounded individuals who have not only done well academically, but have a sound character with a strong desire to give back to society. OCBC Local Undergraduate Scholar Ong Ruo Yun, 26, gives us a first-hand account of the opportunities OCBC scholars can expect to enjoy.
The OCBC X-Factor
To the casual observer, Ruo Yun appears to have made an unlikely career choice. The Psychology graduate from the National University of Singapore (NUS) is now working as a Business Analyst with OCBC’s Customer Analytics and Decisioning.
Ruo Yun explains, “I’ve always had an interest in psychology and understanding human behaviour. After I graduated, OCBC offered me a position which involved designing and conducting quantitative consumer analysis. I thought it would be a great place to apply what I learnt from my course of study in real-world situations.
“I did a brief internship at OCBC Bank when I was a student at NUS. It was a very positive experience and I really liked the OCBC culture and working environment. That was another pull factor to join the Bank even though I wasn’t required to serve any bond upon my graduation!”
This is a glowing testimony of OCBC’s status as an employer of choice for young, promising graduates. While OCBC may look for the X-factor in its scholars, it too possesses a unique appeal for those seeking a fulfilling career that will help them learn and grow.
Ong Ruo Yun
OCBC Local Undergraduate Scholar
Designation: Business Analyst, Group Customer Analytics and Decisioning, OCBC Bank
Studied: Bachelor in Social Sciences (Psychology), National University of Singapore
An Enriching Career
As a Business Analyst, Ruo Yun’s main role is to draw meaningful consumer insights and marketing solutions from customer data. She explains, “Some of my key responsibilities include data analytics, consumer segmentation, campaign management, trend analysis and data mining. The meaningful consumer insights gained from data analysis can be translated into useful solutions for my colleagues in other business units – this is perhaps the most fulfilling aspect of my job!”
Ruo Yun has found ample opportunities and platforms which allow her to apply and develop the skills she picked up in university. By funding its scholars’ tertiary education with no strings attached, OCBC Bank gives them the freedom to chart their own growth story and find their own niche within the organisation should they choose to do so.
Ruo Yun admits that her career choice often elicits surprise from the people she meets. She says candidly, “My career choice is often met with raised eyebrows when people find out that I studied Psychology. People think that Banking and Psychology are completely different fields, but I beg to differ! The research and analytical skills I acquired during my four-year course have proven to be invaluable to the three different roles I’ve taken on since joining OCBC – as a segment insight analyst, relationship manager and my current role a business analyst.
“For instance, my background in Psychology provided me with good training in analytical thinking and gave me a solid understanding of human behaviours. These skills are really useful when I do consumer segmentation work to understand the ‘what’ and ‘how’ of consumer behaviours.”
The OCBC Scholarship not only offers funding for the scholar’s course of study, it also gives scholars internship opportunities to gain hands-on experience and insights into the OCBC culture and the Bank’s daily operations.
Ruo Yun shares, “Scholars can opt to intern at any division of their choice at OCBC Bank. I chose to intern at the Group Risk Management Division, where I was tasked to conduct macroeconomic research on various countries. I was also involved in drafting a staff recognition framework.
“It was truly an enriching and eye-opening experience for me as I got to learn more about the banking industry. The internship also helped me to better understand OCBC’s culture and working environment and this eased my transition from life as a student to a worker in the corporate world. In fact, this internship led me to consider banking as a career option.”
OCBC Bank also engages its scholars in career conversation. Ruo Yun adds, “OCBC Bank has a pool of veterans with a wealth of experience whom scholars like myself can approach for career advice. Just before I graduated, I had the privilege of getting some career advice from a member of the senior management.”
The Bank recognises the importance of helping scholars build up their professional networks, and OCBC scholars are given opportunities to network and interact with scholars from different cohorts. “The Bank’s wide network of scholars has given us opportunities to interact and learn from our seniors through sharing sessions. In fact, I am still in touch with some of them today!” says Ruo Yun.
An OCBC Family
And of course, it is not just all work and no play at OCBC Bank. Ruo Yun has participated in some of the Bank’s Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities such as helping out at Willing Hearts – a non-profit, volunteer-run charity organisation dedicated to assisting the underprivileged and marginalised in Singapore.
She adds, “I am part of a committee which organises offsite team-bonding events. My department had a great time together playing games like laser tag, escape rooms and going on the rollercoasters at Universal Studios Singapore! These activities have helped our team to bond together, and I am grateful for such wonderful and supportive colleagues who make working life so exciting.”
Ruo Yun is truly thankful to have wonderful colleagues and many opportunities to learn and grow her career. She said, “Even as I take on different roles within the department, my seniors are always approachable and willing to teach me when I need help or guidance.
“Knowledge is readily shared in my team. For instance, we have workshops conducted by our team members which allow us to share technical skills and various approaches to data mining with one another. There is always a positive vibe when we work together as a team and it feels very much like a family.”
Ruo Yun looks forward to building a career with OCBC Bank, adding, “I hope to use my interest and knowledge in human behaviour as well as my analytical skills to help the business units. Data analytics is what I want to do.”
And as a scholar who is close to completing her fourth year in OCBC Bank, Ruo Yun is suitably positioned to offer a word of advice to aspiring OCBC Scholars. She finishes, “There will always be someone smarter or better than you, but it is more difficult to find someone who is humble and with a heart for learning. These are qualities that an OCBC scholar should possess. Remember to stay humble and always have an open heart to learn and to give. It will help you in the years to come as you embark on your career, regardless of the path you choose to take.”