Today’s newspapers quoted Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong as saying that while engineering was key to the country’s future “it has become harder to woo Singaporeans into the profession.”
He goes on to say that “Singapore is also not at the cutting edge” in most engineering fields.
Govt Must Take Blame: As he is a forward-looking, intelligent leader, I guess it has also occurred to him that the government must take the blame for its failure to build this critical talent pool within the country.
When most Singaporeans are kept out of the local universities, with a significant portion of engineering courses being taken up by foreigners, how can we expect the situation to be any better?
I may have my statistics wrong but I wish the local media take a crack on investigative reporting to get to the bottom of it.
Mr Lee has also talked about how Silicon Valley is scoring over Singapore. Of course, it does with all the foreign students Singapore accommodates, at the expense of locals, only eyeing Silicon Valley. Those staying back are not the type of talent Singapore needs – Silicon Valley discards!
China and India: Mr Lee also goes on to say: “Even in Asia, countries like China and India not only have larger pools of talent, but deeper capabilities and they have created IT firms that are world leaders.”
The reasons are simple: They are a thousand times bigger than Singapore and they don’t fill their universities with foreigners.
I have written several posts in the past, so I don’t wish to harp on how Singapore has failed locals in terms of education. Here are some of them that can be checked out:
- Singapore’s failures in education
- Do more to address ICT Skills gaps among citizens
- Singapore institutions dispensing obsolete IT knowledge
- Singapore universities – where foreigners thrive
- Jobs for every Singaporean is a matter of right
G Joslin Vethakumar