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Dear Mentor:

How appreciated is a masters degree from Singapore?
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I have received an admission offer from the National University of Singapore (NUS) for the Master of Science in Management of Technology Program. What is your opinion about the quality of education at the NUS Business School? Do you think it will offer me some good career opportunities in the South East Asian region? Will you be able to tell me about the career prospects in Singapore itself? Being a techno-functional program, will I be able to get some career opportunities in the Unites States, especially in the technology sectors like silicon valley on the strength of this course? How internationally acceptable do you think will be this degree from the NUS? Will it be recognised or at least appreciated in the US?

As for myself, I am basically a Commerce graduate from India. I then pursued a post graduation in management from a reputed, albeit a regional institute in India. I specialised in Finance and my work experience over the past three years is also in the area of Finance. My career goal is to combine my knowledge of business & finance with the new technology skills, which I will acquire during this course. More specifically, I want to move from being a pure finance executive to a business consultant and a technology consultant and seek a career in venture capital firms or technology intensive companies like my current employer, hence this course. Do you think I am going on the right track?

I shall be grateful if you could please advice.

Bound to Succeed, India

Dear Bound to Succeed:

We are impressed by a very well thought-out, well-written inquiry. The quality and quantity of your questions, which offer an insight into your thinking process, are quite impressive. Your rationale for pursuing additional learning is on track with your ambitions.

Singapore is an advanced country, with a liberal economy and advanced technology. The quality of education in Singapore is quite good, both at school and college levels. NUS is a well-respected university. For the reasons you have well articulated, the program for which you have been offered admission is quite appropriate. In a nutshell, the quality of the school and the program are good, and so is their suitability to your goals.

Career prospects for anyone in any country are determined by the supply and demand of the talent at any point in time, and such is the case for Singapore. National governments typically require that the employers must give preference to local permanent nationals. Should the demands for talent exceed the availability of local talent, some limited number of foreigners are allowed to work in the country under the country's immigration policy. The employers are required, by their local national government, to produce documented proof to obtain permit for the foreign nationals. Should the employment opportunities exist when you graduate, beyond what the local talent can fulfill, you would certainly have the advantage of your education at NUS. The same applies to your prospects in the South East Asia region, and in the US.

Just because an academic institution or a particular program is appreciated in a country, it does not mean you can find employment in the country. It will depend on the supply and demand situation of the local talent and the immigration policies at the time. We have discussed the issue of making a career in the US in an earlier Dear Mentor: column. We would like you to understand that the requirement for immigrating into a country for a career go far beyond individual qualifications and experience. Whereas your qualifications and experience are the basis for employment, the immigration policies of the host country determine whether you can in fact immigrate.

We wish you continued success.

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