RECRUITING TALENT, DEVELOPING LEADERS
The PSC awards fully-funded scholarships to outstanding young men and women who are committed to serving Singapore through a career in the Public Service. PSC scholarship holders study various disciplines at established local and overseas universities, adding to the diversity of the Public Service when they commence their careers.
In 2020, the PSC played its part in adapting to respond to the pandemic. Beyond shifting scholarship interviews to a virtual format and coordinating efforts across the Public Service to bring overseas scholarship holders home in a short span of time, the PSC also offered alternative options to scholarship holders, ensuring they continue with their education and development while prioritising their health and safety.
The PSC adopts a rigorous process to select scholarship holders. The Commission considers a range of information from multiple sources. These include the candidate’s personal statement, school report, psychological interview report, Co-Curricular Activity (CCA) achievements, community involvement records, academic results and other notable achievements. The holistic assessment brings out key factors the PSC seeks in candidates, including leadership potential, resilience, diversity of experience, aptitude and passion and fit for a Public Service career. In the 2020 scholarships selection exercise, the PSC piloted game-based assessment (GBA), with plans for incorporating this into the range of selection tools in 2021. The GBA identifies behavioural traits in applicants such as risk propensity and learning orientation, allowing the selection panel an insight into some of the non-intellectual traits of scholarship applicants.
The PSC also undertakes a broad outreach and communications plan each year to provide updated information on PSC Scholarships and Public Service careers to our stakeholders through regular meetings with school teams, as well as information sessions for students and their parents. In 2020, the PSC held a virtual information session for pre-university and university students. The virtual format provided a convenient and informative platform, allowing for a wide reach, while prioritising health and safety amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
PSC Scholarships - A Gateway to Public Service Careers
The PSC Scholarships offer three main career paths – Public Administration, Professional Service and Uniformed Service.
Recipients of the PSC Scholarship or PSC Master’s Scholarship will take up a role in Public Administration. These recipients are not tied to a specific Ministry at the start of their scholarship journey and their deployment is decided upon their graduation. The Public Administration pathway provides scholarship holders the opportunity to develop as a leader and gain experience in multiple sectors of the Public Service.
Some candidates have a clear focus and interest in the career path they wish to pursue. For them, the PSC offers career tracks such as Engineering, Foreign Service, Legal Service, Medicine, Public Finance, or Teaching Service under the Professional Service career pathway. Recipients on these schemes will return to serve in the respective agencies linked to their scholarships and are guided and developed in line with their professional tracks.
Recipients who respond to the call of security and defence of the nation will set off on the pathway of the Uniformed Services. The PSC awards The Singapore Armed Forces Scholarship (SAFS) and The Singapore Police Force Scholarship (SPFS) to outstanding young men and women who make the commitment to maintain peace and stability in our country.
SAFS holders will be systematically trained and developed to assume key command and staff appointments in the SAF while SPFS holders will be groomed to be leaders in upholding law, maintaining order and keeping peace in Singapore.
PSC Scholarship Recipients who Proceeded for Studies in Academic Year 2020/2021
34 scholarship recipients proceeded for studies in the academic year 2020/2021; 4 for Public Administration, 23 for Professional Service and 7 for Uniformed Service (Table 2). Details of the course of studies and country of studies are in Table 3 and Table 4 respectively.
The PSC also awards the President’s Scholarship – widely regarded as Singapore’s most prestigious undergraduate scholarship. The President’s Scholarship is awarded on top of another public sector scholarship. It recognises individuals who have stood out among their cohort, demonstrating excellence in various pursuits. Recipients of the President’s Scholarship are dedicated to improving the lives of Singaporeans and exemplify the ethos of the Public Service.
In 2020, there was one recipient of the President’s Scholarship (Table 5).
Photo Credit: Ministry of Communications and Information (MCI), LH Goh