1. Brief Profile of Mohammed Farhan Bin Mohd Firdaus and career(“Farhan Firdaus”)
Career: Human Resource Manager with Family Dental Centre
Highest Qualification: Bachelor of Social Sciences from the Singapore Management University
• Co-founder & President of Voluntarius (Singapore), a non-governmental organization established and based in Singapore that promotes volunteerism among youths since 2012. To date, more than 3,000 youths have volunteered through the organization.
• Chairman of the Si Ling Secondary School Alumni
• Committee Member of the Community Centre Management Committee, Sembawang GRC (Woodgrove)
o Vice Chairman of the Malay Activity Executive Committee
o Community Service & Social Secretary of the Youth Executive Committee
• After being inspired during the Overseas Community Service Program I joined while studying in SB in 2008, led by Mr George Teo to Sangkhlaburi, Thailand, I have since led 3 other projects to Jakarta, Indonesia in 2011, 2012 and 2014 respectively.
• I have been invited to give talks quite regularly in Singapore and abroad, regarding service-learning and voluntary social action:
o Hwa Chong Institution (2011)
o Singapore Management University (2012 and 2014)
o National University of Singapore (2011)
o NUS School of Medicine (2014)
o ASEAN+3 Youth Leaders Symposium in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, 2012
o Japan-ASEAN Student Conference in Tokyo, Japan, 2013
o European Union Directorate of Education, Brussels, Belgium, 2014
o University of Indonesia, Jakarta, Indonesia, 2011
o Petra Alpha Elementary School, Jakarta, Indonesia, 2014
o Ruamrudee International School, Bangkok, Thailand, 2014
• Awards and Decorations:
o European Union Visitor’s Program in 2014(similar to Singapore’s Distinguished Visitor’s Program); past representatives to the EU included Speaker of Parliament, Mdm Halimah Yacob and MP Ms Tin Pei Ling
o SSA-Ikeda Peace Award conferred in 2012 by the Singapore Soka Association for outstanding efforts in community service in Singapore and overseas
o Stars of SHINE Youth Award, conferred in 2011 by the National Youth Council for Youth Leadership and Community Service
o Singapore Polytechnic Model Student Award in 2010
o Singapore Polytechnic Excellence in Service Award (Arts & Culture) in 2009
o National Youth Achievement Award (Gold) conferred in 2009 by the NYAA Secretariat
o Singapore Indian Education Trust Academic Prize in 2009
o Lee Kuan Yew STEP Scholarship in 2007
2. Describe my life in SB/SP
I had a good experience studying in the School of Business as I managed to balance both my academics and student life. For my student life, I was heavily involved as the President of the SP Ambassadorial Relations Corps (SPARC) as well as the President of the SP Photography Club which I revived in 2008 and 2009. In addition, I was also involved in a community service project to Thailand which really opened my eyes and gave me fresh new perspectives, that I was unaware was going to influence my life leading to my creation of an NGO which promotes volunteerism in this country.
I can say that I was a ‘good student’, always completing my homework and trying to learn as much as I could from my lecturers. Lecturers would remember my friends and I from the LSCM option who would stay back, not to ask for ‘ten year series answers to projects’ but rather, about the experiences of our lecturers in the Industry, Ms Melisa Lim, Ms Olivia Koh, Mr Tang Kah Heong and Mr Anthony Ranasinghe can testify to that.
I would often stay back late (in the middle of the night) during my 2nd and 3rd year of studies in SB to make sure we get our projects right for the project presentations, but apart from that, I also appreciate the efforts of my lecturers who engage industry speakers to speak about their respective industries. All that I have learnt in SB have become crystallized memories, and have grown to be the foundations of my business knowledge moving forward. Practical useful and Industry-relevant information is what I have benefited from three years of SB education.
3. What contributed to my academic success?
I was fortunate to have caring lecturers throughout my academic experience in SB.
Also, I was in project groups where my fellow group mates were serious about school in one way or another, despite having different motivations of going to school.
Lastly, what made me serious about school was knowing that SB is a good business school where students were motivated and lecturers were nurturing.
4. Was there a particular lecturer in SB/SP who made an impact in my learning and maturing process?
At the beginning of my poly life, it was Mr George Teo who impacted my learning by sharing his industry experiences from decades ago, how he started his career selling pipes and making multi-million dollars for the company he worked for, this story he shared was to inspire us to be more creative in our approach to marketing. He’s an amazing Marketing lecturer.
Other lecturers who really impacted my learning and contributed to my maturing process was Mr Anthony Ranasinghe who always shared with us his more than two decades worth of stories in PSA, he wowed us with all the amazing things he did and saw while being a logistician, Ms Melisa Lim and Ms Oliva Koh both coming from the Supply Chain Management background also gave me a lot of perspective, they were always ready to meet students outside of the classroom to share about the industry, engage in academic advising and even, lend students a listening ear to talk about anything which students felt comfortable with sharing. Our lecturers truly go beyond their call of duty to maximize students potentials in order to shape their future.
5. My advice for SB’s current students?
We are currently living in a quick-paced and globalized world which is driven my demand from emerging economies and both demand and supply by industrialized nations like Singapore. We cannot be complacent and isolate ourselves to just Singapore, we must be open-minded, bold and daring, determined and tenacious to seize any opportunity for business. The sentence, “think global act local” cannot be more apt.
To begin crafting a brighter future for themselves, our students can do the following:
1) Gain more exposure outside of academics:
a. Join a CCA that involves you with entrepreneurship, current affairs, debates etc
b. Join professional bodies to gain more exposure in the industry and network
c. Gain more valuable work experience, go and work part-time during your holidays to gain experience in retail as a retail assistant, gain experience in marketing as a tele-marketer or even help an NGO in their advertising and branding as a volunteer
d. After your diploma, you might want to gain valuable work experience for several years before University, employers are looking for workers with both academic qualification and relevant work experience
2) Be a valuable employee
a. After SP, learning does not stop, even if you decide not to pursue a full-time degree, there are many part-time professional courses you can embark on, you must adopt a lifelong learning mentality, because the only thing that will remain constant in this globalised volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous world is Change, change will be constant, unless you are equipped with the most relevant knowledge and skills, you will be obsolete.
b. One of the most important things you must do is to gain some international experiences, Singaporean youths with experiences working in emerging economies such as the BRIC and MIST economies like Brazil, Russian, India, China, Mexico, Indonesia, South Africa and Turkey, would find themselves in a good position to be poached by established business organizations for their work experiences in these emerging markets.
6. Was I involved in any competitions or industry sponsored projects?
a. The Ngee Ann Education Centre Entrepreneurship Competition; my team did not emerge as the winners
b. I received the TNT Worldwide Logistics Academic Prize for being one of the top 3 students in the DBA Course (LSCM Option)