STUDENTS in Singapore no longer need to travel further than a few train stops to achieve an overseas education.
Following a trend set by tertiary institutions such as the University of New South Wales (UNSW), Melbourne’s Box Hill Institute (BHI) has opened a campus in Singapore, with a focus on community and social services.
BHI Singapore’s campus director Victor Lim said there was a growing need for courses in this sector.
“The population in Singapore is growing old, with social problems similar to Australia’s, and it needs people with experience in the community sector to develop programs with expertise in Singapore, and tailor it to our context,” Mr Lim said.
Working in conjunction with the Singapore Workforce Development Agency, BHI Singapore will offer courses in disability services, student care, youth care and outreach, protection and rehabilitation, and senior services.
Mr Lim said students would be equipped beyond mere skills knowledge and job employment training, and studies would be immersive and hands-on, with opportunities to work in the industry right from the start.
“They will be sort of thrown into the deep end, but with someone to guide and mentor them daily, of course,” he said.
BHI Singapore will cater to three groups of people: new entrants with no previous experience in the industry, existing workers seeking to upgrade their skills and qualifications, and those with many years of industry work experience but whose credentials are not recognised by the Singapore government.
Box Hill Institute’s international vice president, Noel Lyons said the project provided unique opportunities as well as challenges.
“Working [in] the Community and Social Services industry sector to meet Singapore’s existing and future human resource development needs is a great responsibility, and one that Box Hill Institute will work hard in partnership to deliver,” he said.