A new scholarship programme, to be first run in August 2012, was launched on Monday to support workforce training for innovation-driven manufacturing sector in Singapore.
The Manufacturing STEP Scholarship (MS2) programme, jointly launched by the Singapore Workforce Development Agency (WDA) and German Institute of Science and Technology - TUM Asia (TUM Asia), aims to build a pipeline of management talent for the long-term needs of the manufacturing industry, the two organisations said in a joint statement.
Under this pilot programme, WDA will fund selected candidates to pursue studies leading to a Master of Science degree in six areas: Integrated Circuit Design, Microelectronics, Aerospace Engineering, Industrial Chemistry, Transportation & Logistics, and Biomedical Imaging & Computing.
WDA's funding package for the MS2 initiative covers grants for course fees and training stipends, which is estimated at S$1 million (US$0.8 million) over a three-year period from August 2012 to July 2015.
The MS2 is the first-of-its-kind government-academia-industry joint partnership that allows potential scholars to be nominated and sponsored by their employers with funding support from WDA. Additionally, scholars under the programme will benefit from an 8-month in-company attachment before completing their course. Another feature of the programme is the customised employer-designed career progression plan for the scholars, as part of their training and development roadmap.
All the degree programmes will be held in Singapore. The Master of Science degrees in Transportation & Logistics and Biomedical Imaging & Computing will be solely awarded by Technische Universitat Munchen (TUM). The degrees in Integrated Circuit Design, Microelectronics and Aerospace Engineering will be jointly awarded by TUM and Nanyang Technological University (NTU), while those in Industrial Chemistry will be jointly awarded by TUM and the National University of Singapore (NUS).
"WDA's joint scholarship programme for manufacturing professionals with TUM Asia is a timely initiative to boost the number of skilled professionals in the industry," said Wong Hong Kuan, chief executive of WDA, at the launch of the programme on Monday. "Singapore attracted a record S$13.7 billion in fixed assets investments (FAIs) last year, and investment commitments are projected to remain strong in 2012. The MS2 programme will play a part in meeting the demand for skilled workers by helping companies to develop and retain their best talents. WDA will continue to explore and support further innovative and suitable programmes that will strengthen the capability and competitiveness of the manufacturing sector."
"TUM-Asia is very honoured to collaborate with WDA on this unique initiative that will strengthen Singapore's manufacturing capability in the long term," said Dr. Markus Wächter, managing director of TUM Asia. "During the past 10 years, TUM Asia has been successful in leveraging the high academic standards of Technische Universitat Munchen (TUM) as the foundation for our industry-focused education programmes that equip graduates with relevant industry skills and prepare them for leadership roles in the global economy. The MS2 is a demonstration of our commitment to further contribute to the development of the manufacturing industry."
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