With his Nitec in Electronics (Mobile Devices) grades, Daniel Ezzra Adly B Mohamed could have opted to further his studies at a polytechnic. Instead, he chose to take up a Work-Study Diploma (WSDip) in Security Systems Engineering at ITE. Daniel was among the pioneer batch of trainees. “The programme gives me work experience, a salary and the opportunity to further my studies,” said Daniel, of his decision. Today, he emerges as the top trainee in his WSDip course, and is building his career at Certis Technology (Singapore) Pte Ltd, the company he had been training at for the last 2.5 years.
2 For excelling in his course, Daniel was presented with a Course Medal by Dr Maliki Osman, Second Minister for Education, at the WSDip Signing Ceremony on 8 December. The Course Medallists from two other WSDip courses are – Sharon Quah Bee Kiew from Rehabilitation Care, and Muhammad Hafiz B Mohamadnor from Mechanical & Electrical Services Supervision.
The Right Decision
3 Sharon, a therapy assistant at St Luke’s Hospital, appreciates that the WSDip programme has helped her deepen her clinical knowledge and skills to better support the therapists and patients. “The course has exceeded my expectations. I was already working at St Luke’s Hospital for four years. The course allowed me to learn beyond my work scope, and enabled me to adopt a more holistic perspective when seeing a patient. I can now better explain to patients the reasons and benefits of the exercises.”
4 Kenneth Lam, Deputy Director, Rehabilitation Services at St Luke’s Hospital, is also pleased with the WSDip outcome. He said, “The course has provided clinical knowledge in addition to what can be learnt in the workplace. As a result, Sharon is now able to carry out activity analysis while treating patients during therapy. This is a higher-level skillset that would have taken longer to learn on the job.”
5 For Hafiz, choosing the WSDip programme was a no-brainer. Having completed his Nitec in Facility Technology under ITE’s Traineeship programme, the WSDip style of studying and working was familiar to him. He leveraged on the sharing of work experiences with trainees from other companies to help him broaden his understanding. Having made the most of his WSDip training at Engie Services Singapore Pte Ltd, his outstanding performance at work and in class saw him acing his course.
6 “The WSDip is an excellent platform for employers like ENGIE to recruit local fresh graduates, as well as to develop and groom employees to pursue higher roles within the company. With continued development and on the job training, we are confident and believe in Hafiz that he has the potential to excel and assume higher supervisory roles with us in times to come,” said Ms Lim Siew Fern, Head of HR at ENGIE Services Singapore Pte Ltd.
7 “The WSDip is a good programme for employers to recruit local fresh graduates, to develop and groom them to take on higher roles in the company. Hafiz has the potential for further growth in the company such as Supervisor, Engineer, and even Facilities Manager and beyond. There are no limits as we are open to developing our trainees to their furthest potential,” said Ms Lim Siew Fern, Head of HR at Engie Services Singapore Pte Ltd.
8 A total of 62 trainees from these three courses are among the pioneer batch who have completed their training and achieved the Work-Study Diploma. Trainees from the WSDip in Marine & Offshore Engineering will complete their three years of training and graduate in April 2021.
WSDip Programme Expands
9 Since the WSDip programme was first introduced in 2018, it has been expanding annually to include more courses across different industry sectors, so more ITE graduates have a wider range of choices. In 2021, ITE will be offering six new WSDip courses bringing the total number of WSDip courses to 30. (Please see Annex A for the list of WSDip programmes)
10 ITE welcomes 230 companies on board its WSDip programme. They committed to the partnership with ITE by signing Letters of Offer virtually, with Dr Maliki Osman, Second Minister for Education; Mr Andrew Chong, Chairman, ITE; Ms Low Khah Gek, Chief Executive Officer, ITE; and Dr Gog Soon Joo, Chief Futurist & Chief Skills Officer, SkillsFuture Singapore, as witnesses. The WSDip programmes last between 2.5 and 3 years, with 70 percent of curriculum time conducted via On-the-Job training (OJT) at the workplace and 30 percent on site at ITE. Developed and designed in close partnership with employers, the WSDips train ITE graduates and deepen the skills and knowledge needed by industry.
Building Strong Partnerships
11 About half of the companies on board the WSDip programme this year are new partners, some of whom are offering new WSDip programmes. The other half are returning and long-time partners – a testament of the strong support ITE has garnered from employers for the WSDip pathway.
12 “ITE has created a programme with a shared mindset of what GlobalSign.in (GSI) needed. We have had good experience with interns from ITE, and have decided to fortify this collaboration through a Letter of Offer. We believe the WSDip programme gives GSI a wonderful opportunity to mould students into a role that is much needed in the industry. We aim to train and mentor students to our needs and requirements, thus making them an integral part of our journey,” said Veemal Gungadin, CEO of GlobalSign.in. GSI is an event technology company that will be offering the new WSDip in Event Management in 2021.
13 NEC Asia Pacific Pte Ltd, a WSDip partner since the programme’s introduction in 2018, will be offering places for Cyber Security & Forensics, Security Systems Engineering, as well as the new IT Systems Integration. “We are pleased to continue to support ITE to nurture the next generation as much as we can. We received very good feedback from hiring managers that the WSDip candidates who joined us were able to put what they had learnt into transferable skillsets that value-add to NEC and the industry at large. The trainees were competent, reliable, and contributed greatly to all our projects,” said Vivian Tay, Senior Vice President, NEC Asia Pacific Pte Ltd. She sees ITE’s inclusion of new WSDip courses as a timely move to help support industry shortage in emerging areas and to close the hiring gap.
A Winning Collaboration
14 The Ceremony also saw ITE signing a Memorandum of Understanding with the Singapore National Employers Federation (SNEF). The collaboration will see ITE working closely with SNEF to support employers in workplace training, and the upskilling and career progression of employees through ITE’s Certified On-the-Job Training Centre (COJTC) scheme. For companies looking to structure their in-house OJT training and accreditation system, this scheme will enable co-creation and consultancy with ITE to build their in-house training capability and culture.
WSDip Application Requirements
15 The WSDip programmes are open to both fresh and in-employment ITE graduates who are Singapore Citizens or Permanent Residents, and have:
• A relevant Nitec with a Grade Point Average (GPA) score of at least 2.0; or
• A relevant Higher Nitec
16 In-service employees with equivalent qualifications such as Workplace Literacy & Numeracy (WPLN) level 5 and above, relevant work experience and strong employer endorsement will also be considered.
17 Phase 2 Registration for the WSDips will open on Thursday, 10 December 2020. Applicants can register via the ITE website at www.ite.edu.sg.