Introductory webinars to get things started
Early on in a student’s time at NUS Business School, they are introduced to what BIZCareers offers with webinars about their services. Easy to attend and open to all, they are the first step in a process that achieves excellent results, both in terms of employment and salaries.
Jerry Zhao, now working at Apple Inc. China, recalls the impact these talks had on him. “When I started my master’s degree at NUS, I attended a lot of online webinars,” he shares. “From that moment on, I started to realize the importance of balancing my studies and also my career preparation.” (00:48)
As Jerry explains, getting exposure to your options early in your course puts you at a real advantage in terms of career preparation. Nobody gets a quality job overnight, and the earlier you become aware of what’s out there, the earlier you can start perfecting your resume, honing your interview skills, and reaching out to companies.
Personalized career advisors
The next stage in the BIZCareers pipeline is to get to know your career advisor. Your assigned advisor will offer career counseling throughout your time at NUS Business School and will help you make connections with key contacts, companies, and alumni to help you on your way.
Speaking from her experience, Master of Science in Finance student Rachel Mok, advises others to waste no time in getting acquainted. She says, “I would say the moment you get to know who you’re assigned as a career advisor to really just reach out. Even if you don’t have any questions, even if you just go in for a chat, establish that relationship.” (04:41)
Like most things worth having in life, preparing for a career is much easier when working in collaboration with others. The advisors are trained professionals with years of combined experience in placing NUS students in companies such as Apple, Bloomberg, and Amazon Web Services, so the smart thing to do is kick off the relationship early.
Reaching out to useful contacts
When he embarked on his master’s, Jerry found that he didn’t have a clear picture of where he wanted his career to go. Despite social media influencers stressing the importance of having a solid plan and sticking to it, Jerry’s situation is incredibly common for many postgraduate students. His career advisor reassured him that not only is his situation normal, but also that it’s important not to push yourself to do what you don’t want to do.
However, that doesn’t mean you should sit back and make no effort to specialize. The more you learn, the clearer your ideas will become, as Jerry discovered: “I started to reach out to a lot of people on LinkedIn and I really wanted to get some insights from them and from the FMCG industries and some other manufacturing industries.” (02:16)
Although reaching out to useful contacts is quite a personal task, Jerry reported back to the NUS BIZCareers team regularly with his findings. His advisor could then structure his next steps and add context to what he had learned.
Writing a resume that’s tailored for each application
Although it’s only a page long, writing a killer resume can be an anxiety-inducing experience when done on your own. It’s very difficult to know what it takes to “get it right” – especially when each industry prioritizes different skills.
Joanna Hu, a Master of Science in Human Capital Management and Analytics student, had difficulties adapting her resume for an English-speaking Singaporean market. Therefore, she was very appreciative of her advisor’s guidance. “My career advisor is very patient and also really considering my preferences, my strengths, and also editing the resume for my targeted jobs,” she says. (02:50)
Adapting her resume to each application played a key part in landing her a job at Amazon Web Services (AWS), where she now works.
Practicing techniques with mock interview
Joanna’s story didn’t end with a slick resume. As part of her AWS application, she had to attend five rounds of interviews, something which really put the stress of writing a resume into perspective.
Again, with the help of her career advisor, she put in the work to gain the knowledge and confidence to succeed in the interview process. “We did mock interviews and she gave me very timely feedback and let me know how to present the best of myself in the interview,” she reflects. (03:30)
When it comes to interviews, it’s often nerves, not preparation, that make people fall short. Therefore, taking the time to do mock interviews throughout your studies is one of the most useful benefits that NUS BIZCareers offer.
Career talks with industry leaders
BIZCareers invites senior profiles from a vast range of industries to talk to the students about their organizations. They cover the company culture and business strategy, but also delve into topics from the kind of jobs on offer to what recruiters are looking for.
These career events occur throughout NUS Business School programs and welcome representatives from multinationals such as Oracle, Deloitte, and United Overseas Bank, based in Singapore. This gives all students the opportunity to meet potential employers and learn more about what career path they want to take. Joanna’s advice for new students at NUS is to “keep learning, keep asking questions, and you will never know how it will help you.” (06:03)
Extra workshops to complete the picture
We’ve already seen a comprehensive amount of activities on offer. But what about the aspects that fall through the cracks?
NUS BIZCareers provides a vast range of workshops that complement each student’s career preparation. Remembering a niche issue she was having trouble with, Rachel tells us, “The digital interview where you only record yourself: I find that to be the most tricky. So I know that there are specific courses for that so you can also sign up for those workshops with BIZCareers.” (05:08)
These workshops are perhaps the X-factor that makes BIZCareers so successful. With granular attention to detail, they give each student wide-reaching training that fully prepares them to enter the working world.
If you’d like to hear from NUS master’s students directly, get in contact with them via the MASTERGRADSCHOOLS Ambassadors Page.