Horse-trekking to Kol-Ukuk Lake in Kyrgyzstan
- A profile of your post SB journey / work career. Please do highlight any awards, commendation, and achievements you have to date.
After graduating from SP and completing National Service, I furthered my studies at the Singapore Management University (SMU), pursuing a Bachelor of Business Management with a major in Finance.
Over the past 4 years in SMU, I’ve managed to accomplish numerous key achievements in school. For my academic excellence, I’ve been placed on the Lee Kong Chian School of Business Dean’s List on three occasions, for academic year 2010/2011, 2011/2012 & 2013/2014. I have also been awarded the Prudential Scholarship 2012, TF LEaRN Scholarship 2012 as well as the MPS Scholarship 2014. All three scholarships are awarded to students who have shown excellent academic results as well as active involvement in the community. In May 2014, I graduated with Summa Cum Laude (First-Class Honors) and was awarded the Mendaki Excellence Award and SINDA Excellence Award for my excellent results in SMU.
For me, education is not just restricted to what SMU can provide but also what can I learn from other schools, so I went to expand my network and meet new people by going on exchange to NUS as well as Chulalongkorn University in Thailand. The local and international exposure helped to mould my soft skills as I learn how to work with people of diverse background.
Although being in SMU is not just about maintaining academic excellence but also success in terms of co-curricular activities, I took up an executive committee position in a new student body called the SMU Emerging Markets. The club’s mission is to be a premier knowledge hub for students with an emerging markets focus and using research and industry partnerships as our twin growth engines. I was the Deputy Director of the Africa Desk and during my term, the Africa Desk won Best Research Desk and I was nominated as the Best Deputy Director for the club.
In addition to being in SMU Emerging Markets, I was the Founder and Chairperson for SMU’s first-ever Harvard College in Asia Program (HCAP), which is a student-led conference bringing together students from Harvard University and various top universities in Asia on an exchange program in Harvard as well as local Asian universities. It was a great experience to mingle with not only Harvard students but also other students from Asia.
Furthermore, SMU has a strong business case competition culture hence, I took a stab at two competitions: Bain & Company 2013 & Singapore Business Case Competition 2014 and suprisingly won First-Runner Up for both competitions, out of 100 teams, without any previous experience in business case! Both competitions have an intensive format, where we had to labour through 15-hour overnight case and present in front of professional judges without sleep. That was definitely an experience I wouldn’t forget.
In order to gain experience before entering the workforce, I took up three internships during my time in SMU. I took internships from various industries so that I am able to broaden my skill sets and view things from a bigger picture. So I interned at companies like UBS AG, International Enterprise Singapore (Ghana Office) and McKinsey & Company. The internship in Ghana was an amazing experience as I stayed and travelled around West Africa for 3 months gaining experience and knowledge that are not found in your normal business textbooks. I am a firm believer in studying and working overseas as it develops your character and how you interact with people from all walks of life.
Upon graduation from SMU, I joined Citibank as a Management Associate since July 2014.
- Describe your life in SB/SP
During my time in SP, I pursued a Diploma in Banking and Financial Services (Banking Option) and graduated in 2008. I enjoyed being in SP, as you are required to be independent and be responsible for your education. Of course there were times that we skipped lectures or classes to hang out with friends but at the end of the day, we made sure we knew what was taught and completed all the necessary assignments due. It was a fun environment with like-minded friends and lecturers who are accommodative to talk to students.
As for CCA in SP, I was involved in the SB outreach club – SB SMART where we are the student representatives for all SB-specific events such as Poly Open House etc. It was great to share my experience with the ‘O’ Level students who are planning their next step of their academic journey.
- What contributed towards your academic success
Hard work, determination and willingness to understand beyond the classroom
- Was there a particular lecturer(s) in SB/SP who made an impact in your learning and maturing process?
There were many lecturers who helped me develop in one way or another. Mr. David Tan was our class Form Teacher and he made me the class chairperson for our final year. With that appointment, I had to be confident of my abilities and step up as a leader on behalf of my class. This increased responsibility and leadership has been the foundation of my personal developments as I took up more leadership roles during National Service and SMU.
Also, other lecturers like Mrs. Wong Mei Shan, Ms. Janet Fok and Mrs. Agnes Ching have influenced me during my time in SP as well. They are always open to talk to students and entertain our shenanigans (mostly mine). The environment in SB is warm and fun-loving, with a relatively flat hierarchy thus I know I can always knock on their door and chat with them about things other than just school. This constant interaction made me confident to speak to seniors and give my point of view during discussions. This skill is crucial especially in university as well as work so I want to thank all of them for building a solid foundation for me and my success so far.
- Do you have any advice for SB’s current students
Don’t be afraid to take the risk in life. Always try something new, something different and challenge yourself then you’ll achieve your purpose in life.