Stepping stone to success

Engineering and Sport Sciences are two popular courses at PSB Academy for school leavers who have completed their GCE O levels, N levels and ITE.

Dr Susie Khoo, dean and senior vice-president of PSB Academy, says: "We offer certificate and diploma programmes to further their tertiary studies.

These programmes are part of our progression pathways. The wide array of diploma programmes gives advanced standing to various degree courses offered by our university partners.

"At PSB Academy, we pride ourselves on providing a variety of opportunities for students to excel academically and to gain valuable personal skills and hands-on experiences in their chosen field of study."

The programmes allow students to acquire both hands-on experience as well as academic knowledge.

Both practical and theoretical skills are valuable at the degree level and also judged favourably by employers.

PSB Academy offers a comprehensive suite of full-time and part-time programmes to over 10,000 local and international students annually. From certificates, diplomas, undergraduate to postgraduate degrees, programmes encompass multi-disciplines: accounting and finance, business and communications, engineering and technology, life and physical sciences and English language.

The degree programmes are offered in conjunction with universities from Australia and the United Kingdom.

The academic staff of over 600 place emphasis on academic rigour and excellence, and aim to equip students with the knowledge and skills that are relevant to the industry.

Dr Khoo says: "Besides progressing to a degree at PSB Academy with one of our university partners, our diploma graduates can also take up a degree with any other university where we have credit arrangements in place for courses in engineering, sport science and other disciplines."

Job opportunities

For electrical engineering graduates, she adds, there are many possibilities for them and the type of work they could do, which include electronics engineering, automation and control engineering, power generation and distribution engineering, and robotic engineering. They are often sought after in the electrical utilities, communications, electrical and electronic equipment manufacturing, processing and transport industries.

The sports industry also offers a wide range of career options that graduates could pursue, she adds. These include coaching, sports development, personal trainer or manager of a fitness or outdoor pursuits centre.

Other career paths include being a sports administrator involved in funding and organising activities, event organiser, sports or health promotion specialist.

"There is still some way to go for a national 'sports culture' to fully develop, and I would attribute this to the long-held view of sports as a hobby and recreation rather than as a viable and attractive career option," she adds.

"However, sporting DNA of Singapore is evolving and the sports industry has undergone some changes in recent years with the government's push to strengthen development in this sector.

"The inclusion of Singapore in the F1 racing calendar and the construction of the upcoming Sports Hub are some examples of this motion."

Mid-career professionals looking for a change and who want to gain valuable personal skills and hands-on experiences can choose from the wide variety of options at PSB Academy.

Mr Robert Liu, 39, a technician from San Francisco, had Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder which hindered his early academic pursuits. He says that the "standard education model was unable to teach me in a way that I could understand".

But after going through medical rehabilitation and joining the academy, he has found a new lease to study and to be professionally qualified.

Currently pursuing a Diploma in Mechanical Engineering, he says: "My passion is to tinker, create and innovate. These have brought me to the field of engineering. I just don't want to read and theorise about how things work. I want to see, touch, play and experience them, and find out how they affect life in the real world. PSB Academy has provided me with the platform to do so."

Mr Paterno Ayunon Porte, 47, a electrical engineer from the Philippines, is pursuing a Diploma in Sports & Exercise Sciences because he's "passionate about sports".

He says: "Even though I participated actively in my company's sporting activities and engage in sports outside work, I still feel the desire to study sports and science. I hope that some day soon, I'll be able to enjoy a good career in the field of sport and exercise sciences."

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