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[ 6 November 2003 ] Breakfast Seminar - "Graduating into the Depressed Market"

CommerceNet Singapore (CNSG) with support from National Trades Union Congress (NTUC), organised a Seminar, "Graduating into the Depressed Market" on the 6th November 2003 at the Carlton Hotel Singapore, Empress Room 2, Level 2 . The seminar focused on "Current Salary Trends of Fresh Graduates: Aligning Expectations and Realities" and aimed to share clear strategies for employment seekers to react and seek out the limited job openings after graduation.  Professionals and academicians came together with the industry to share key strategies and a look at the limited vacancies available in the next 6 months.

Mr. Lim Soon Hock, President, Societe International De Telecommunications Aeronautiques (SITA)  and Director, CommerceNet Singapore delivered the welcome address to about 30 participants. Mr. Lim spoke on how the external environment had changed quite a bit over the years and that Singaporeans had to quickly grapple with and adjust to the change in the fastest possible way.

Mr Seng Han Thong, Assistant Secretary-General, National Trades Union Congress, Member of Parliament, Ang Mo Kio GRC was the 1st speaker and he spoke on "Staying Relevant in the Changing Economy." He encouraged the participants especially the graduating students to venture overseas whenever opportunities arose.

The 2nd speaker, Dr W.A.M Alwis, Director of Academic Affairs, Republic Polytechnic discussed on "Beyond Salaries Expectation: Out-of-the-Box Professional Career Development." Dr Alwis stated that although acquisition of new knowledge and skills remains a critical factor in career development, one cannot overlook that most professionals learn most of what they need to know in order to function well at the workplace itself, and not at formal schools. His presentation included an interesting angle on the pyramid of life-long learning. Development of skills of learning at the workplace is therefore important to any professional he stated. He also stated that educational institutions which traditionally focused on topics and curricular content, in order to remain relevant have to look beyond and find ways of equipping learners with skills of learning. Dr. Alwis also mentioned that flexibility of class schedules and choosing topics to learn are vital to professionals seeking educational advancement.

The speakers took turns to answer the audience's questions. The Q&A session was also spiced up with interesting episodes from the speakers' personal lives.

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