Singapore, 12 April 2022 – SP Group (SP) is donating S$1.35 million to the Institute of Technical Education (ITE) to establish the SP Group Engineering Study Awards. The funds will provide monthly financial support to 450 engineering school students from low-income families over the next three years.
This initiative builds on SP’s sustained backing over the years, through book prizes for ITE’s electrical engineering students and job exposure as part of its commitment in nurturing the next generation of technical officers and engineers for Singapore.
Amongst the first batch of students receiving the Study Award is Lim Jun Jie Jackie, a firstyear Nitec Mechatronics & Robotics student at ITE College West. Jackie, who works parttime at a supermarket to help with his family’s expenses said, “I am happy to receive the Study Award, because it means I do not need to keep thinking about having to work more hours and can instead focus more time on school.”
At SP, more than 16 per cent of its 3,600 staff are ITE alumni and of this group, close to 60 per cent have pursued further education to attain their diploma or degree. Most begin their SP careers in roles that extend from being first responders attending to network incidents, to taking pre-emptive action against disruptions to critical infrastructure projects for the nation.
In addition to the study awards, SP will work closely with ITE to enable their students to undergo work-study stints in power grid, sustainable energy, new technologies, and mentorship with SP’s experienced engineers.
Group Chief Executive Officer of SP Group, Stanley Huang, said, “SP Group is committed to empowering youth with access to educational pathways to pursue their career aspirations, regardless of their socio-economic background. ITE has provided many of our technical officers and technicians a strong foundation to grow their engineering capabilities. They play an important role in upholding Singapore’s world-class electricity and gas reliability standards.”
Chief Executive Officer of ITE, Low Khah Gek, said, “We are very appreciative of SP Group coming forward to sponsor study awards for our engineering students. With this Study Award, our financially needy students can take on less part-time jobs, and instead, focus more on their studies and excel. They can pursue their passion in engineering, optimise their potential and build their careers in the various engineering sectors.”
Over the years, SP has awarded more than 450 education scholarships, sponsorships and book prizes amounting to S$10 million to inspire and level the playing field for students with a passion for engineering.
Appendix: Profiles of SP Group Engineering Study Awards Recipients
Celeste Koh Xing En
Nitec in Mechatronics & Robotics, First-year Student
Celeste’s parents divorced while she was still an infant. Celeste’s mother single-handedly raised her and her older brother. The family is now living in a 2-room HDB rental flat. As a result of COVID-19, Celeste’s mother was jobless for a period of time. However, she took up a course to upskill herself and has since found a new job. Despite her family’s financial situation, Celeste carries the same resilient and positive attitude as her mother.
Celeste is happy to receive the SP Group Engineering Study Award, as it will help ease the financial burden on her. Beyond this, she sees the Award as an affirmation and recognition of her hard work. The Award is a source of motivation for her to do better in school.
Celeste said, “Initially, I was not confident that I could be do well in engineering. However, I still chose the Mechatronics and Robotics course, because I wanted to challenge myself to learn skills that may not be natural to me, and take the chance to expand my skill set even further. I am happy that the more I learned in my ITE course, the more I enjoy what I am doing. I hope to be able to work in the area of coding in future.”
Lim Jun Jie Jackie
Nitec in Mechatronics & Robotics, First-year Student
Jackie comes from a single-parent family. His mother does part-time parcel delivery, while his grandmother works as a part-time cleaner. He has a baby sister. The family lives in a tworoom HDB rental flat.
After his N-level examinations, Jackie started working at a supermarket twice a week during the school term and almost every day of the week during the holidays for extra income. Half of his salary goes towards supporting his family.
Jackie has a positive learning attitude and is always eager to learn. The SP Group Engineering Study Award is a source of much-needed financial assistance for him and his family. The Award will help relieve his mental stress over finances and the need to work longer hours, so that he can focus better on his studies.
Jackie said, “I chose to study Mechatronics & Robotics, because I enjoy engineering. I like how my course engages my mind to solve problems and gives me ample opportunities to do hands-on work.”
Muhammad Rayyan B Faiszal
Nitec in Electrical Technology (Power and Control), First-year Student
After his N-level examinations last year, Rayyan started working once or twice weekly at a butchery in a wet market. A day of work usually starts early at 7.00 am and ends at about 3.00 pm. He spends his salary on necessities like groceries and food for his family. At times, he also has to give his younger brother pocket money, on top of his own expense. He continues his part-time job while pursuing his studies at ITE.
Rayyan’s mother works in sales, while his father is a Grab driver. As a result, the family’s income is unpredictable.
Rayyan is happy to be receiving the SP Group Engineering Study Award, as it means he can offer his family even more support financially. He feels assured knowing that he will be receiving a stable sum of money monthly. It helps relieve the pressure of having to think about putting in more hours at work and earning more for his family.
Rayyan said, “Everyone uses electricity almost all the time, so I feel that the power sector will always be relevant in maintaining our quality of life. This means that my skills will remain important and I can be assured of a stable and rewarding job in the future.”