Fresh Graduates Out Of The Oven: Are They Out Of Jobs Though?

If University Education wasn’t hard enough, imagine graduating from University Education and being unable to secure a job. This is not due to your inabilities but it is rather just the result of COVID-19. We never invited COVID-19; it just gatecrashed a wonderful graduation moment for our 2020 fresh graduates. So the question at hand is: are our fresh graduates going to have the worst time ever or is Singapore stepping up to do something to ease the fall? We’ll answer 3 big questions on this.

Are There Jobs?

The biggest question would actually be if there are even jobs on demand right now. If there isn’t a demand for jobs, there’s no use having supply. Also, even if there were available jobs, what if the starting pay was just ridiculously low as well? Many fresh graduates also tend to aim for jobs with higher payout as some might be using it to pay their outstanding study loans. But with this current situation, it might be difficult to do so.

Hence, the Ministry of Education (MOE) has temporarily suspended the repayment and interest accumulation of all study loans for one year. This would provide fresh graduates with less to worry about on their already-filled plate. For the availability of jobs, the Institutes of Higher Learning (IHLs) and multiple government agencies are stepping up to provide as much access to available jobs as possible. This is done through personalised career guidance by the IHL Careers Centres alongside career fairs held online. And because fresh graduates might require additional support in such a stressful period, resources like online counselling are also available.

It is evidently true that while employers are also generally struggling during COVID-19, in actual fact many are still prepared to take in new fresh graduates. On the other hand, those who do not have job vacancies are generally willing to offer traineeships instead. In such situations, IHLs are also working hard to create about 100,000 job opportunities supported by the National Jobs Council. SGUnited Jobs and Skills Package primarily aims to help graduating students acquire a suitable job during such a period.

Nothing Suitable At The Moment?

Though there still might be a range of available jobs in this COVID-19 period, some fresh graduates might still decide to delay their entry into the job market. This could be due to the lack of suitable jobs or other personal matters. In such a situation, the IHLs will still step in to provide assistance and reduce ‘wasting time’. Through Continuing Education and Training (CET) modules, fresh graduates can take part in the learning of free new skills and knowledge.

What’s even better is that the IHLs are working towards a programme-styled module where credentials can be gained at the completion of modules. This pumps up the credifications of the modules where fresh graduates can talk about in the future meaningfully. Apart from the CET modules, fresh graduates also have the choice to further their studies in Advanced Diplomas, Specialist Diplomas, or graduate certification programmes widely available in Singapore!

Not A Graduate Yet Due To COVID-19?

The last group of students heavily affected by COVID-19 would be students who are unable to graduate from their courses due to the lack of internships that take up Modular Credits. It is evidently a challenge now to have internships amidst COVID-19 so IHLs have been looking for alternatives to prevent the delay of graduation and learning outcomes for more students.

Where impossible to arrange for rescheduling of the internships, substitutes will be offered to fill up the graduation requirements. This could be in the form of industry-related projects or taking additional modules. Though such substitutes are undesirable, in difficult times like this, adapting to changes is only but necessary.

As maturing adults, we need to take a step out of negativity and step into looking at a bad situation positively. COVID-19 is indeed an unwelcome moment in our lives, especially for the graduating batch of 2020. However, FamilyTutor, a leading home tuition agency in Singapore urges you that it is our part to play to adapt to changes and continually accept the support provided by the Singapore government as you step into your next phase of life!

For your information, the ‘Current Affairs’ series covers the latest news and developments in the realm of education, added with a dash of discussion and a sprinkle of opinion!



Zoe is an undergraduate student in Singapore who loves thinking deeply and translating them into writing. She hopes her reflective opinions and sound advice weaved into relevant articles will be useful for you in one way or another!

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