Work experience and its pertinence to the NUS MBA programme

What does the admissions team at the NUS MBA programme look for when it comes to work experience? Is it the length of service or the prestige of the company? Are applicants with fewer than the average number of years of work experience at a disadvantage?  We seek to answer these questions and more in equipping prospective applicants with the right information for pursuing an NUS MBA degree.


How much is sufficient?

Full-time students in the 2013 intake of the NUS MBA programme have an average work experience of 5.5 years, while their part-time counterparts have seven years. Do bear in mind that this is merely a statistic, not a strict guideline. While some candidates can impress admissions officers with just two years of work experience, others may benefit from having a lengthier corporate stint.

Internships and professional positions

For younger applicants with a dearth of work experience, listing their internships can be useful in demonstrating practical work experience, transferable skills, or even minor accomplishments. Even so, an applicant with a history of full-time professional work experience is likely to have an edge over another with only internships on the resume. However, do not underestimate the value of internships. Apart from gaining professional experience in a specific industry, it can be a source of valuable contacts and an opportunity to gain valuable insights in an industry. Continue reading

The seven hashtags of highly effective people

As in life, the only thing that is constant in the business arena is change. Here are seven hashtags, or tools, that highly effective people use in dealing with it in making career advances.

Seven hashtags of highly effective people


Vision and foresight have helped many good business leaders become great. An MBA programme reveals their way of thinking be it through classes, events held by companies, or study trips. Our Think Business website also offers a selection of videos of interviews with business leaders that provide such insights.


Business credibility and career credentials are built on work experience, which can be accelerated. For instance, working on intense, demanding projects and case competitions may boost a person’s ability to add value to his or her next role. The story of NUS MBA alumnus Celena Yew is a case in point. Continue reading

New career plans for the new year

As January approaches, this is the time of the year to reflect and take stock of the work done in 2013, while planning for 2014. Instead of chewing your pencil over your career resolutions for the upcoming new year, do consider our multiple-choice question. There is no wrong answer.


new year career resolutions MCQ

Click for a rest and progress

Looking back on a year of MBA excitement and eager blogging, we noticed that our bloggers talked about their decision to pursue an MBA at NUS as if they were watching their careers on television. Some wanted a pause from the intensity of work; others saw it as a fast-forward button.

So which is it, we asked ourselves. Well, we realised that an MBA is a chance to take a break, as well as an opportunity to boost career growth. This makes it analogous to a television remote controller for your career – you decide what you want for the present and the future. So if your answer was (A), (B), or (C), consider pursuing an MBA. But if it was (D), do share your thoughts by commenting below.

Here are some of the thoughts of NUS MBA candidates.

Charisse Rossielin Cruz on an epiphany induced by a movie and her MBA studies:

After so many years in the workforce, I felt the need to hit the pause button, take a step back and just breathe. I did. So here I am, taking a step back. And breathing. And reading several textbooks and cases. And writing several project reports. And studying for several exams. And yes, still breathing.

Celena Yew on moving to Singapore and completing a part-time MBA while working at McKinsey:

With only 3.5 years of working experience before starting my MBA course, I considered myself still relatively inexperienced but the burning desire to conquer the corporate world was very strong. … I was not satisfied with just working, I wanted a more fulfilling life. …
Working and studying part-time for an MBA, I became a tougher person and I believe even my productivity level took a quantum leap!

Need more reasons to consider an MBA? See what The Economist has to say. We’ve also got 10 more reasons for you on the NUS MBA website.

Bonus: Read about NUS-HEC MBA alumnus Jason Lim, who moved from the public sector into the high-flying world of corporate finance after his MBA.

So you want to be an entrepreneur… ?

Did you know that innovation is a strong feature of our community and a core value of our school? Following are some excerpts from a blog post by Christian Halberg, an NUS MBA student who perfectly embodies the school’s entrepreneurial spirit.

Collaborative Environment

One of the big perks of being in NUS Business School is the thriving community of smart, intellectual peers who sometimes share the same passion. I found these peers – our team, comprising of me (from NUS Business School), and three fellow engineers (from NUS Faculty of Engineering), got together at Lean LaunchPad (LLP), a new initiative by NUS Entrepreneurship Centre.

“Flipped classroom” Approach

National University of Singapore is the first university in Asia to have adopted this experiential ‘flipped-classroom’ teaching methodology, as a way to match-make teams of engineers and business people. Continue reading

Doing meaningful work with a dose of finance savvy

Despite doing well as a banking executive, Lynnette Wang Lingfang desired a socially rewarding career in healthcare. She says she’s found “the best of both worlds” in doing an MBA programme at NUS, given the business school’s consistently top global rankings and its tie-up with the university’s school of public health that would allow her to specialise in the sector.

Lynnette Wang Lingfang, Singaporean Part-time MBA Student. Class of 2015, Intake 2013

Lynnette Wang Lingfang, Singaporean Part-time MBA Student. Class of 2015, Intake 2013

Monetary incentives not the sole motivation

My career started after I graduated in 2008 with a Bachelor in Business Administration from the Singapore Management University. Like many of my peers aspiring to enter the banking industry, I was elated when I had the opportunity to join Citibank as a trade operations executive. Year 2008 was the onset of an economic downturn with the high-profile collapse of the Lehman Brothers company. With banks cutting jobs worldwide, I was glad I managed to secure that position. While work went on well, I started to reflect on what I really wanted to do as my long-term career. It became apparent to me that monetary incentives of the finance industry would not be the sole and main driver of my career; I wanted to do something that would be socially rewarding as well. Continue reading