Cor, is Mr Heng Swee Keat for real?

That’s what the Cockneys of London, UK, not Canada, would say in response to our Education Minister’s confession published in today’s Straits Times: that there are jobs aspired to by Singapore’s young that the ever-affable Mr Heng has never heard of 🙄

(see below for what those exotic new jobs are).

Nah, I think Mr Heng is probably being humble and self-deprecating. Or more believable, he was pulling the reporters’ leg in a light moment?

Any other alternative is unimaginable. For someone who was Singapore’s top central banker and then Education Minister to be truly in the dark about the new jobs that have flowered in the last 2 decades is too horrendous to contemplate.

It’s like getting into an airborne aeroplane only to find that the pilot isn’t well-versed on the route to get from Airport A to Airport Z.

So I truly hope that what Mr Heng said is intended to be ho-ho ha-ha and not boo-hoo, I haven’t a clue!

Heng Swee Keat on…


THE diversity of aspirations of young Singaporeans today both cheers and worries Our Singapore Conversation (OSC) chief Heng Swee Keat.

He recalls sessions where he asked students what they want to be when they grow up. Their answers involve “terms which I am completely unfamiliar with”, he said.

They want to be sound artists, fashion photographers and animation character developers – a wide range of jobs reflecting the evolving nature of the Singapore economy and the exposure children now get, he said.

But while he feels cheered by the different pathways and passions on display, it worries him. “Unless we are able to create opportunities, many of our young people are going to be disappointed,” he added.

This is not a challenge the Education Ministry can meet on its own, but will require a whole-of-government approach to building an economy that can accommodate the aspirations of the workforce of the future.


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