Debate: Are SIM grads inferior?

The debate on whether local graduates are preferred by employers over those from private universities was reignited recently.

The debate was sparked by an article posted online that claimed that graduates from the National University of Singapore (NUS), Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and Singapore Management University (SMU) have a leg up over graduates from Singapore Institute of Management (SIM) when it comes to landing their first job.

A similar sentiment was echoed by students pursuing their degrees in SIM.

One SIM student said, "Everybody has a degree. It is more difficult to get into local universities. Over here you just have to pay money to get in.

"The criteria to get into a private university is very low, so if I am an employer I would rather take in local university students."

However, employers and human resource practitioners said that this is simply not true.

Mr Mohamed Ismail Gafoore, CEO of Propnex, said, "For us the key is that we would like to see a person strive. Is he passionate about things? Is he willing to learn new things and is he prepared to fall?

"We want an all-rounder."

Rebecca Lewis, editor for Human Resource Magazine, pointed out that it is impossible to prove that an SIM graduate is less deserving of a job than an NUS graduate.

Ms Debbie Chan, Vice President of DBS' Campus Strategy and Graduate Recruitment advised students to take up relevant internships, be active in extra-curricular activities and to go on exchange programmes if possible. She said that these activities would build a student up to be ready for the workforce.