The Realization of Academic Aspirations
The demand for high-quality international education has never been greater. Universities are required to continuously develop their reputations and foster partnerships with global universities and organizations. In Singapore, the Ministry of Education has succeeded in developing the country as an international education hub and as a globally-recognized center of learning; it is today home to highly regarded academic institutions
SIM University (UniSIM) – the country’s only privately-funded university – focuses on the learning needs of Singapore’s working professionals and adult learners.
‘Singapore’s workforce needs to continually improve and upgrade its knowledge and skills base for the country to remain competitive,’ says Professor Cheong Hee Kiat, President of UniSIM. ‘Our students work and study at the same time – it’s tough. Yet, we give them the opportunity to achieve their educational aspirations and realize their potential. Our modular structure allows students to customize their learning programs and select from a wide spectrum of disciplines. This, together with our flexible approach, helps them balance their studies with career, family and social responsibilities.’
UniSIM is focused on reaching out to the diversity of the adult learners in Singapore. It has a keen social mission, too, not only in education for the professional workforce, but also in meeting qualification needs in disciplines that are not served by the other local universities or are directly impacting on the social needs of the population – areas such as counseling, human resource management, early childhood education, logistics and supply chain management, and human factors in safety. Whether it is to enhance career prospects, broaden life experiences or fulfill a personal quest, UniSIM has something for every aspirant with over 50 programs in its stable.
‘There is fluidity to how we run UniSIM,’ says Prof. Cheong. ‘Our niche programs, robust academic standards and supportive faculty, all contribute to a ‘learn today-apply to morrow’ approach. Our pedagogy leverages on teamwork, and our faculty have real-world experience.’ This strength is complemented by its very own students who bring their work experience and their determination to succeed into the classroom. The network of more than 12,000 students and 17,000 alumni – most of whom are working adults – is vital in developing a person’s career through building relationships in one’s industry of choice, making contacts and gathering information or tips about the industry.
Recognizing the need to embrace technology, UniSIM has developed into a web-focused, I.T.-enabled institution. The University monitors trends in the field of teaching and tap on emerging technologies to boost its training methodologies and initiatives. UniSIM’s students thrive in focused independent learning environments through technology-supported programs with strong online course components. This provides UniSIM students the flexibility to learn anytime, anywhere and at their own pace.
Prof. Cheong said: ‘UniSIM will continue its role as a practitioner based teaching university with selected research strengths. We have developed a strong reputation in Singapore of offering our students an effective educational experience while facilitating their work/life balance. We will continue to offer the largest range of part-time degrees in Singapore and to play an important role in the development of Singapore’s knowledge-based workforce.’