SINGAPORE Management University (SMU) is a premier government-funded university known for producing graduates with a total skill set comprising hard knowledge skills, soft people skills and ‘heart’ skills. Students develop these skills through an interactive pedagogy pioneered in Singapore by SMU. In this unrivalled learning approach, students are taught by highly-qualified faculty in MBA-style seminar rooms where participation in class is the norm. Students are emboldened to speak up and share their opinions and perspectives with their professors and classmates. Participants benefit tremendously from such discussions and debates that are often lively and spontaneous.
Added to this are the numerous global opportunities available to SMU students. Students have the choice of participating in an international student exchange with any one of the 218 overseas universities across 48 nations, or summer study programmes or overseas study missions. In any given intake, approximately 86 per cent of students have gone on at least one global exposure trip. SMU hopes to have 100 per cent of students embarking on an overseas trip in the next couple of years.
Compulsory internships allow our students to be exposed to the working life and make informed decisions about their future career choices. Students develop their knowledge and skills working as interns, with a high possibility of securing jobs even before graduation.
Fourth year Information Systems Management undergraduate, Chong Yik Sean, an international student, says, “Working in a company is truly a good learning opportunity. During my 10-week internship, I discovered the importance of leadership, communication and teamwork between managers and support staff which may affect the bottom line.”
Students also contribute 80 hours of community service or ‘giving back to society’. Such projects build their ‘heart’ skills, teaching them to be socially conscious and responsible. One such community service project, Project Namaste, was set up seven years ago. Chairperson Janel Loi shared, “My team heads to Nepal annually to serve the community. Teaching Nepali students and teachers English is our main objective. We hope to raise the literacy standards of the students and maximise their career opportunities and hopefully their standard of living.”
The outcome is that SMU graduates possess a healthy balance of IQ and EQ – qualities that are highly valued by employers. It was not surprising then that our graduates continue to do well in the annual Graduate Employment Surveys, with 92 per cent securing jobs within six months of graduation, and 55 per cent receiving two or more job offers in 2013.
SMU currently has over 7,200 undergraduate students and offers six undergraduate degree programmes in Accountancy, Business Management, Economics, lnformation Systems Management, Law and Social Sciences. SMU has also achieved the distinction of being one of the youngest universities worldwide to be conferred the prestigious AACSB accreditation for its Accountancy and Business Management programmes, and the EQUIS accreditation for its Business Management programme.Outstanding students have the opportunity to take a double degree programme combining any two degrees. Single degree students may also enrol in any one of the 19 second majors, including finance, marketing, accounting, corporate communication, and a newly-launched second major in arts, culture and management. Students clearly enjoy the options given, with 70 per cent of them taking a double degree or second major.
SMU is situated in the heart of the city centre, in Bras Basah. It has a state-of-the-art campus in close proximity to Singapore’s financial and business district, and is the first and only university in Singapore to have an underground train station (MRT) right at its doorstep.
In addition to all these benefits, studying at SMU is also quite affordable. Those offered admission are eligible to apply for government subsidies to allow them to pay affordable tuition fees. Financially needy students may also apply for tuition fee loans and bursaries to fund their studies at SMU.