Monday, March 31, 2008


I received some good news after my 3 months of hard work getting my university applications through. NIE called me up for an interview that is scheduled to happen tomorrow. The girl informed me that i had to be free from 11:30 to 1:30pm. 2 HOURS?! I'm thinking of all the reasons as to why it has to be so long... I'm hoping really bad that it does NOT include essay writing or case studying something. You know, to test your maturity in handling a situation, or some such. YN says that perhaps it's long because there may be a queue. Hopefully!

It's interesting that i managed to get this interview, since i didn't fulfill all the paperwork requirements (unfortunate circumstances) and I am no stellar postgrad with lots of experience or exceptional brain power. :-D

I don't really know what God has in store for me in the next half a year or so. This period of my life consists purely of doing the mechanics, and then placing my trust in the Lord for whatever that may come about. In other words, wait patiently and keep smiling.

Anyway, here's my bit of advice for those of you thinking of furthering your studies (eg. Masters):

1. Be on GOOD TERMS with your educators in school. You will/may have to ask for referee reports from them. If you are applying to more than 1 school, you'll be "bugging" them considerably as they are quite busy people, i assume.

2. Work/volunteer/intern, if you can, while studying. You may also need to ask the person in charge of you to help you out with referee reports once you are done with school. And yes, be on GOOD TERMS with your boss. That said, work also gives you some real life experience and it's a bonus if you work in a place related to your current area of study. It may also spell out to the uni admissions people that you are able to manage your time and that you have some substance.

3. START YOUR APPLICATIONS EARLY. You really don't want to miss deadlines. Check out the application deadlines for your intended course as early as 6 months before your final examinations. Sometimes, you'll need to do a lot of leg work and paper work before sending in the ACTUAL applications, and that in itself can take MONTHS, so please start early. Don't procrastinate! (eg. getting a degree accreditation from professional bodies/associations so that you can apply for a particular course in university)

4. Of course, be very sure about what you want to do in future so that your course can train you in specifics.

5. Doing your homework on the schools (does not mean that just because it's not listed in the top 10, means that it is not good) is important. You want to know what are the particular strengths of that school, what it has been good in for the past years. Locations, cost of living, facilities, COURSE SYLLABUS, whether the degree is approved in Singapore, etc.

6. Make sure you look-out-for-fulfill-hand-in everything that the school requires from you. You don't want them coming back after 1 month only to tell you that you missed out on some paperwork and therefore can't process your application. Sometimes, even when they don't specifically ask for something, if you think that it's a common enough request (eg. supplementary information/referee report/work experience history), just get it done.

7. Going through the process can be frustrating from time to time. I didn't have a very tough time because i managed to cover as much ground as possible, to my knowledge at least. So remember, don't pass on your frustrations, be nice to the people who are helping you out. From your parents to the people who are processing your applications!

Ok, this is all for now.

God, thank you for the interview opportunity. May there be more of you, and less of me.

OH YEAH. And since i will be in NTU-NIE tomorrow, i WILL BE FREE AFTER 1:30pm IF ANYONE WANTS TO ABDUCT ME FOR LUNCH OR A CHIT CHAT SESSION!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (ah, the joys of cheap uni food)

ok, that was a darn big hint already lor. Heh.


Speaking of "stellar students", here we have a very "talented" .... Elephant! It PAINTS. Seriously.


Jem said...

2 hours... is short... when I went for mine, it took me 3 hours... All they do is ask for hardcopies of your credentials and make you wait. Only for you to walk into a room of fat old MOE ex-teachers that ask you stupid questions and only wanting to know/hear one thing, "I have to be a teacher, otherwise I will not find meaning in life."

Because I couldn't say that and I believed I that I would still find some sense of purpose in life (duh...), they chased me out and I gladly did so with no regrets.

Jem said...

I just noticed all the bad grammar... Eesh... Kudos to engineering in Singapore... No one speaks good english anymore! Woot~

joline said...


REALLY? Yeah, i was asked to bring my credentials too.

Good thing i am not out to impress teachers since i'm not looking to be one! :-)

But then, if i'm suppose to say the same thing but along the lines of counselling, then ok, i can say it with conviction. :-)

HAH. HOI, why blame it on engineering???? It's unrelated.

Anonymous said...

Gd luck!i have to come early to work tmr, cos my auditors may come anytime soon

cheryl said...

Yeah I'm actually feeling the same way about my next half year too. You know! :)

And that was good advice. Dr. Jo strikes again! Teehee..

Lala said...

wow, jo... man i dont think i have 1 or 2... i think i should start working on a nice good relationship with my profs!!! i'm already hitting the halfway mark this year, i better get serious and not so laidback. :P

joline said...


hey jem. after all the speculation, i REALLY was occupied for the whole 2 hours. 1hr 40min of talk interview and 20min of short essay writing.


how's it going with thr audits?


:-) *nods* Be happy, keep smiling, God has his plans. He's up to something good!


HAHAHA. Ok, time to help do some data entry.... muah haha.

Anonymous said...

my auditors didnt come ytd. this morning is not likely. so might be thu or later in the aftn

Anonymous said...

does god have good plans for me too? i went to find out the cut off point for HR in SP. I cant possibly get into it! 11! how? the next one banking is also 11.haiz, these smarties wat are they doing in polys?so i wan to ask how to find out if private sch's degrees or diplomas are recognised here? any website to go? any advice? i m at wits ends. if i go and work(as a admin staFF), my pay cut is almost half of my salary next yr lor. (hopefully this yr do welll enuff to get pay rise).the more i think abt it, the more sianz i m. dun tell me to stay on in this job, i cant stand it anymore. but i cant get this pay working elsewhere in another field. study or work? study i want but where? even polys is out of my reach, dun tell me retake olevels just to get into poly? tats like very far off lor

Ambrose said...

i suggest private, and given your current education level (izzet diploma or A level, or both?), i think you should do a degree. either full-time private, or take it part time. it's time to make use of your savings, or get a loan :)
no point re-entering the mainstream education. leave that to the young ones. that's juz my opinion.
be prepared for a pay-cut. whenever you switch industries, you're starting afresh, which means you start from below, so don't expect fantastic pay. be humble, know what to expect, and you won't really feel the pinch.
if you really think the added qualifications frm your education will get you a better job, you shd start part-time now, so you dun need to study as long.
searching for information: use any search engines. don't just search for courses, search for jobs, and from there, look at what they require from their job applicants. and remember that ppl normally hype up their requirements, coz juz as we're looking for the best paycheck/job offer, they're looking for the best possible candidate, so dun be shy :)
if you don't mind the pay, administration is a good field to enter as it'll add to your resume quite positively :) especially if you follow up with a good degree. you'll move places ^^ juz always look forward and don't look back.

as always,
(full of crap) Ambrose

Anonymous said...

thks for ur 'crap'. i dun think it is crap, it is sound advice. i haven get around to the idea of accepting a huge pay cut. if i see my frends making big bucks in private, i will really be jealous of them. i mean i can do their jobs wah. so 3 of them have merit, but the rest of us have the same qualifications mah, wats the difference lor? but i m seriously reluntant to join them in private, i cant stand doing this field anymore. as for studying in private uni, i have to say i cant handle it. i want to study full time, tats less stressful than a cramped, high speed part time and wat accelerated prgms. i can hardly handle my poly days, i cant envision myuself studying for a private degree part time somemore. so my options are 1)study full time in SIM 2) get a low pay but senang job 3)get married.whahahaa, ok save my crap. seriosuly. minus the 3rd. JO, SAY SOMETHING!! COunsell me now!! IN SERIOUS NEED now

joline said...


actually, you know. I agree with Ambrose. it's logical and sensible and not completely out of reach. All you need to do is decide to make a change and then make the change! You'll never see any difference in your life if you don't do something that will cause a change.

About making your choice...

1. Can you bear to stay on in the job, whether or not you get good money?
2. Uh, guess not marriage yet hor. *heh*
3. Full or part time? (eh, i think part time is more situable for your situation)
4. Private or not? Personally, i would say that you should try for local polys because you never really know how they would react to your qualifications. You have O and A Levels and a diploma. But, do ALSO try for private. I would say that for private, taking a course is a risk everyone takes. But from what you see today, those who go to reputable institutions DO get jobs in Singapore. So, since applying doesn't really hurt, just apply!
5. Pay. Like what Ambrose said. We all need to start somewhere so it's only natural that we might start lower. Got to be realistic about the way things are.

All in all, you'll need to make some clear and decisive choices. If you say that you want to study, then you have to be strong and tell yourself that you can do it. That's how other people achieve their own victories. Apart from maybe asking from a higher power. :-)
Secondly, you need to consider whether you really want this job. You have job security, the money. But you dislike it, since day 1. So, can you continue to live with it after your bond ends? Something has to give here. We sometimes can't have everything.

Anonymous said...

i cant excel in this job u knw....i dun have patience with children at all. i dun scream at them, but u can hear my erm, un happiness with them...i cant help it, the more i do this job, the more i cant stand myself. i want to be nice too. but impossible....i want to leave..but i m not sure can i take on the challenge of a degree...woah...i think i more or less decided to study