Singapore, October 13, 2020 – The Singapore University of Social Sciences (SUSS) has raised $1 million for our Student Care Fund (SCF) to help students with immediate financial needs due to the COVID-19 pandemic. To date, about 400 of our students have received financial assistance from the SCF. SUSS aims to sustain the SCF so that all students who require assistance will be able to receive the help they need.
The Fund was made possible through generous support from SUSS management, faculty members, employees, teaching associates, alumni, and students, as well as the corporate sector and members of the public.
The SCF was set up in September 2019 to help our students lighten their immediate financial burdens. The cash disbursement varies according to the students’ financial situation. There is no bond attached and the student is not required to repay the grant.
As part of this initiative, our Class of 2020 graduating cohort, headed by the Class Giving 2020 Committee, has also pledged to raise S$10,000 to make a difference to fellow students’ lives.
Ms Yeo Jia Min, 26, Class Giving 2020 Committee Strategy Co-Chair and a full-time Bachelor of Social Work with Minor student said, “COVID-19 has greatly affected the income of many people. Seizing the opportunity to step up and help my fellow schoolmates who are in need, I gamely joined the Class Giving Committee 2020 to make a difference in our community.”
Professor Cheong Hee Kiat, President of SUSS, said, “This is a difficult time for some of our students, especially those with unexpected financial needs. SUSS is thankful for the generosity and support of our donors in doing their bit to help our students tide over temporarily.”
SCF student recipients
Many students who applied for financial assistance faced a loss of household income as a result of the pandemic, and hence had difficulty paying for necessities and tuition fees.
Ms Dyllis Ng Li Min, 22, a full-time Bachelor of Science in Supply Chain Management with Minor student said: “My father, who works in the construction industry, is our main breadwinner. He had to go on unpaid leave due to Circuit Breaker measures. We had to depend solely on my mother’s single income to support the entire household of six people. The financial aid from the SCF was timely and helped to ease some of my family’s expenses.”
Ms Humaira Bte Jaafar, 22, a full-time Bachelor of Social Work with Minor student said, “Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, both my mother and brother were asked to go on unpaid leave. This resulted in a significant loss of household income and we were all stressed out by it. I am thankful to SUSS for having this SCF to help students affected by the unforeseen circumstances.”
For more information on the SCF, please visit https://www.giving.sg/suss/suss_student_care_fund.
SUSS’s holistic effort to support our students and alumni
Apart from the SCF, SUSS has implemented various measures to support our students and alumni during COVID-19. “SUSS is committed to supporting our students during this challenging period. I urge all students and recent graduands to continue their learner-centric approach to deepen their knowledge and upskill. Be open-minded and leverage on these support measures to prepare for the eventual job market recovery,” said Professor Cheong.
Information on SUSS’ other support measures for students, fresh graduates and alumni can be found in the Annex.
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About the Singapore University of Social Sciences
SUSS is a university with a rich heritage in inspiring lifelong education, and transforming society through applied social sciences. We develop work-ready graduates and work-adaptive alumni to their fullest potential through our 3H’s education philosophy – ‘Head’ for professional competency with applied knowledge, ‘Heart’ for social awareness to meet the needs of the society, and ‘Habit’ for passion towards lifelong learning.
We offer over 70 undergraduate and graduate programmes, available in full- and part-time study modes, which are flexible, modular and inter-disciplinary, catering to both fresh school leavers and adult learners. SUSS also offers a broad range of continuing education and training modular courses for the professional skills upgrading of Singapore’s workforce.
Our programmes and courses are offered by our five schools:
- S R Nathan School of Human Development
- School of Business
- School of Humanities and Behavioural Sciences
- School of Law
- School of Science and Technology
To date, over 35,000 graduates have experienced our unique brand of education, and each year, about 15,000 students are pursuing their full- and part-time studies with us.
The Institute for Adult Learning (IAL), as part of SUSS, leads in the field of research on adult learning to build capabilities of the training and adult education sector in Singapore and beyond.
For more information on SUSS, please visit www.suss.edu.sg.
Venture Builder Programmes to groom aspiring entrepreneurs
In addition to our 9-month SUSS Venture Builder programme launched in June 2020, SUSS has partnered with Enterprise Singapore (ESG) to launch a new compressed 3-month traineeship programme for graduates who are aspiring entrepreneurs to fast- track, identify and validate business ideas.
Launched in August 2020, the new initiative supported by ESG will help participants build a stronger foundation in entrepreneurship, and develop innovative products or solutions that are relevant to market needs.
Mr Ernest Chan, 29, a participant of the Venture Builder Trainee (3-month programme), said: “Embarking on this entrepreneurship journey has been fulfilling and eye-opening. I have access to experienced mentors and domain experts, who can provide valuable guidance and network contacts. This immersive training programme will help shorten the learning curve and bring my new venture from idea to fruition.”
For more information, please visit: https://www.suss.edu.sg/experience-at-suss/entrepreneurship/venture-builder-traineeship-programme.
Building on our graduates’ degrees through Resilience 2020
SUSS graduates from our Class of 2020 full-time undergraduate programmes can access a catalogue of continuing education and training (CET) courses to deepen relevant industry skills and knowledge to help with their job search. Full-time graduates can enjoy four free courses (up to 20 Credit Units) at SUSS, taken within three years after graduation. The University helps by recommending suitable CET courses to graduates to build on their degrees.
Courses popular with SUSS graduates include Digital Branding, Data Visualisation and Storytelling and Social Media Marketing in Practice.
Ms Joanna Soh, 25, a recent Bachelor of Science in Marketing with Minor graduate, signed up for two media-related courses. She said, “I wanted to go into the media industry, so I took up Television Studio Production and Audio & Video Production Techniques courses under the Resilience 2020 scheme. These CET courses provided by SUSS gave me many insights and I also gained new and relevant skills which will help in my future job prospects.”
For more info: https://www.suss.edu.sg/courses/schemes/resilience-2020
Personalised career guidance and support for students to boost employability
SUSS’s Career Development Office (CDO) provides career guidance and 1-on-1 mentoring for our full-time undergraduates, throughout their four years of undergraduate studies, and such guidance will continue to be offered to graduates post-graduation.
On top of that, our SUSS current students will conduct Peer Mentoring Workshops for other students to enhance their digital literacy skillsets. CDO has opened up more sessions for these workshops to cater to the Class of 2020 graduates. Some of the topics covered in these workshops includes image and video editing, and programming such as Python and Machine Learning. The student mentors will design the teaching plan and be acquainted with basic class facilitation skills.
SUSS’ career mentors work closely with students to facilitate their work attachments and gain industry-relevant experience during their courses. SUSS students are encouraged to take on interdisciplinary work attachments – tasks and projects that may cross over a variety of business functions – so that they can look beyond their major disciplines and explore work across different functions. This is to enhance inter- and multi-disciplinary training in cross-functional skillsets, where a student majoring in human resource management undertakes a Work Attachment role in marketing. CDO also pairs our students with companies overseas through our virtual internship programme so that they can be familiar with remote working across different countries and cultures.
As part of SUSS’s efforts to help our students with their job prospects, our SUSS career mentors regularly share job opportunities from their network with our graduating cohort. CDO has also been working with partners to explore emplacements of graduates through the SGUnited Traineeships Programme. Within SUSS alone, around 120 new SGUnited Traineeships have also been created in support of our recent graduands.
Ms Sameera Nazrin, 24, a Bachelor of Science in Finance graduate, who recently secured a SGUnited Traineeship position in a foreign bank, said, “I was fortunate to have Joyce, my career mentor from SUSS, who was in constant contact throughout my job search process and provided valuable advice and support. Joyce kept reassuring me of my capabilities, and to do what I truly desire.”
For more info: https://www.suss.edu.sg/about-suss/college-of-lifelong-experiential-learning/cel/career-development-office
Alumni Continuing Education Plus (ACE+) Scheme
Eligible SUSS graduates can enjoy two free modular courses (up to 10 Credit Units) at the University taken within two years after graduation. This scheme encourages our new graduates to continue on the learning path they have taken, in a mode that they are familiar with. This scheme is open to all graduates who completed their undergraduate degree programmes from the July 2014 semester onwards, and all graduates who completed their graduate degree programmes (i.e., Graduate Diploma, Master and PhD) from the July 2019 semester onwards.
For more info: https://www.suss.edu.sg/courses/schemes/alumni-continuing-education-plus--scheme
Course Fee Concession
All alumni of our degree programmes (Bachelor, Master & Doctoral programmes) can receive 20% or 30% of fee concession when they return to take our programmes or take CET courses.
For more info: https://www.suss.edu.sg/graduate-studies/admissions/tuition-fees#Course-Fee-Concession; https://www.suss.edu.sg/courses/admissions/tuition-fees