Feature | Higher Education

Launchpad For Thirst
Of Knowledge

Nothing is more satisfying than knowing what careers you are passionate about. Fortunately for two individuals, the courses offered at TMC Academy were the perfect marriages between ambition and fulfilment.

With a deep interest in psychology, Ellycia Sasha Zainal, 25, pursued a Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Psychology awarded by the University of Northampton, UK. Her stint at TMC would later go on to ignite her fire to pursue a master’s degree at University College London. As for Louis Loh Wei Li, who is also 25, after graduating with a higher diploma in Information Technology (Networking) (HDIT) from TMC, his experience convinced him that his future was best in the hands of this institution as he furthers his education. These are their journeys.

What were your motivations when you made the decision to study at TMC?

Ellycia:The psychology degree offered at TMC has an appealing curriculum. In addition, this institution has affiliation to Singapore Psychological Society, which benefits its undergraduates in a myriad of ways. The prime location of the campus was a plus.

Louis:The Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Computing from the University of Greenwich, UK (UoG) was a coursework-based programme. The structure was dynamic with group discussions and lab tutorials. Also, once at the campus, UoG final year degree students showcased their final year project to a panel of judges from the IT industry who represented the Singapore Computer Society (SCS). The students’ project and enthusiasm inspired me to take up the degree at TMC. My parents’ support in this decision allowed me to pursue a degree at TMC.

Louis Loh Wei Li

Louis Loh Wei Li
Currently pursuing Bachelor of Science
(Honours) in Computing,
University of Greenwich, UK

“ it gave me real-life experience in coding and working with drones. Not to mention, it opened doors in my professional network as well.”

What is unique about your course of study?

Ellycia: As compared to a bachelor of arts, the science program offers broad scientific training with concentrations in developmental, social, clinical and behavioral health. This establishes the ideal foundation for the pursuit of a career or postgraduate degree in these more technical fields.

Louis:The backbone of the degree from UoG is one that stands on practicality to ready us for the industry - such as hands-on lab tasks and formulating reports based on our findings and analyses.

What were the industry or professional events that you undertook during your time at TMC?

Ellycia:Organised visits to the Institute of Mental Health (IMH) and talks by industry experts provided sustained exposure and insight into internal mechanisms of the mental health industry and real-world nature of this profession.

Louis:I am undertaking a year-long practicum project for TMC as part of my final year project where I am developing an event planning mobile application for student communities at TMC. I participated in the Drone Technology Programming workshop organized by SCS, which is affiliated to TMC for the student chapter. Through the participation in the workshop held for the Game of Drones national wide competition, it gave me real-life experience in coding and working with drones. Not to mention, it opened doors in my professional network as well.

Ellycia Sasha Zainal

Ellycia Sasha Zainal
Bachelor of Science (Honours) In Psychology
University of Northampton, UK

Share with us a memorable episode you had during your time at TMC.

Louis:I was awarded TMC’s Best Student of the Month in May 2016. TMC not only recognises the diligent effort in pursuing studies, the academy appreciates conscientious hard work too. This is advocated through the Certificate of Excellence. I have also won the top student of HDIT modules a few times. These tangible recognitions were a boost to my confidence and educational ambition.

What would you say about the culture at TMC among your schoolmates and faculty staff?

Ellycia:Lecturers were approachable and accessible for any communication, concerns or questions. The administrative staff was also helpful and courteous in their interaction with students.

Louis: The staff and lecturers were with me every step of the way during my pursuit of studies. They materialised my dreams and ambitions. My classmates were from different countries as well, such as Russia, Vietnam and Sri Lanka. This continuously improved my communication skills and trained me to be a team player in a diverse environment which is much needed in a cosmopolitan society like Singapore.

Are there any activities at the academy that have helped in your holistic development? Share with us how they shaped your character.

Ellycia:The student club was a great meeting point for students. It created a platform for meeting and interacting with students from the other schools. The international students I got to know paved the way for greater understanding of diverse cultures and this is so beneficial to me when I move overseas for studies.

Louis:Participating in the activities during TMC Academy’s Open House 2016 that were organised by TMC and SCS opened the door to meeting senior students and industry practitioners. This gave me comprehensive insight into higher studies in the IT discipline.

What advice do you have for students who wish to join TMC?

Ellycia:As TMC has been around for more than 30 years, it is an established and recognised education institution. A good student-teacher ratio, teaching facilities and culture of the institution were other considerations that drew me in.

Looking forward, what are some of your career goals? How does TMC help prepare you to meet them?

Ellycia:I would like to pursue a career in the mental health industry, working mainly with kids. Knowing that I can count on my lecturers for help even after graduation makes me feel supported.

Louis:I wish to work as a software developer or provide networking services in any business sector. I intend to attend the resume writing workshop organised by TMC, and use SCS’ job placement services via TMC Academy to apply for relevant positions.