Class of 2020: Industry-Ready to Make an Impact
We speak to three Design and Specialised Businesses graduates who actively pursued every opportunity to apply what they have learnt and concretise their career directions.
In this fourth instalment of the 'Class of 2020' mini series, we feature three graduates from Design and Specialised Businesses who actively pursued every opportunity to apply what they have learnt and concretise their career directions.
Mohammad Ridzwan Bin Rasidi, Hospitality Business (Class of 2020)
Ridzwan, 25, came from a middle-income family and had to provide for himself by working part-time while studying at SIT.
"I have worked as a part-time ice-cream seller, ad-hoc event crew, and part-time tutor – all whilst studying for my degree, and that's on top of other school commitments, such as co-curricular activities (CCA) and management committee duties!" he said.
Though it was challenging to juggle many responsibilities over his three years of university studies, Ridzwan finds that at the end of the day, he has benefitted from it.
"Through my struggles from the earlier days, I have learnt how to balance work, studies, and external commitments, as well as to prioritise what's important and to work with multiple deadlines, which will serve me well in the future," he said.
"My career aspiration is to become a leading light in the MICE industry – someone who is knowledgeable in the field and versatile across the different components of MICE," shared Ridzwan, who had a Diploma in Tourism and Resort Management from Ngee Ann Polytechnic.
To hone his leadership skills, he assumed several leadership positions in SIT, such as the President of Hospitality Business Student Management Committee in 2017, Vice President of Week Zero Committee (Orientation) in 2018, as well as being part of the Steering Committee of the Harvard Business School Club of Singapore Mentorship Programme 2018/19.
He was also awarded the Outstanding Student Leader of SIT in 2017 and Outstanding Student Management Committee of SIT 2017.
Now an Experience Management Executive at Unearthed Productions, an event management company, Ridzwan hopes to be the catalyst for transformation at his workplace and find new ways of completing tasks more effectively.
Jordon Tan, Accountancy (Class of 2020)
It was not all smooth sailing for Jordon, 26, when he first started his Bachelor of Accountancy programme at SIT.
"I've had troubles coping in the early stages, as after two and a half year of national service, I had to adapt to studying again. As a result of tremendous pressure, I did not do well in my first mid-term exams at SIT. I was also constantly worrying about the condition of my mother as her cancer had relapsed then," he shared.
However, with hard work and resilience, Jordon was able to overcome his struggles to receive multiple scholarships and awards, including the SIT Mid-Term Scholarship, the Lim Siah Mong Scholarship, and the Baker Tilly TFW Scholarship, on top of being on the Provost's List in AY2018/19 and AY2019/20. He also received the Loh Chia Heng Accountancy Award and the Singapore Accountancy Commission Outstanding Student Leader Award.
"One of the most memorable awards was the SIT Mid-Term Scholarship, as I felt that it was unattainable due to my modest grades at that time. However, the university and the Scholarships and Financial Assistance (FAS) team believed in me, and the scholarship helped ease the financial stress on my family and allowed me to focus fully on my studies," he said.
Outside of class, Jordon served as the Director of Community Services of the SIT Rotaract Club, where he worked with the Institute of Mental Health and Metta Welfare Association to engage beneficiaries and raise awareness on mental health. He is currently studying for his Singapore Chartered Accountant qualifications and is planning to further his studies once he has acquired sufficient work experience.
As an Audit Associate at KPMG, Jordan has his sights set on a more noble job. "I hope to eventually go into teaching, as I've had many professors who have inspired me, and I hope to do the same for others," said Jordon.
Dalton Wong Lik Hung, Hospitality Business (Class of 2020)
For Dalton, 26, a university education is more than just getting a degree, but the start of a lifelong journey of learning, unlearning, and relearning – an SIT-DNA trait which he identifies closely with.
"My personal motto is the 'Kaizen' philosophy, which are two Japanese words that mean 'continuous improvement'. I believe that we can always do things better, even when it seems to be working well, and that's how we can achieve growth in our education, career, and personal life," he said.
The highlights of his university life include his Integrated Work Study Programme (IWSP) experience with Circus Maximus International, and his participation in the Singapore MICE Challenge 2019, where he led a team to represent SIT and clinched top place.
"I've had an amazing time planning and coordinating business events during my IWSP, which included seminars, conferences, incentive trips, and trade shows. Being grounded in theoretical knowledge has allowed me to contribute ideas and recommend solutions by thinking out of the box," he recalled from his IWSP experience.
In 2019, Dalton led a team of four, representing SIT, to compete with 16 tertiary-level school teams in the Singapore MICE Challenge 2019. His team came out top and won a trip to attend PCMA Convening Leaders 2020, one of the world's largest business networking events, in San Francisco, USA.
"That was the highlight of my undergraduate journey – we put what we learnt into practice and presented our proposal to an international group of business professionals. It was a wonderful experience to represent SIT and Singapore," shared Dalton.
Now a Business Development Executive in iFAst Corporation, a fintech company, Dalton plans to further his studies in the long term, as he believes in lifelong learning and seeking continuous improvement.
Stay tuned for the next feature on the 'Class of 2020' mini series.