Man in business suit

Student expectations to earn S$3,000 to S$4,000 from their first jobs: Contextualising expectations with reality

Scholarship portal BrightSparks conducted a survey of 3,215 university, polytechnic, and junior college students, and news outlets ran with the provocative headlines “1 in 5 students in Singapore expect starting salaries of S$4,000 or more, survey finds” (Nov. 21) and “Three in four students in Singapore expect more than $3,000 from their first job” (Nov. 20). Unsurprisingly, the headlines drew derisive criticisms against young Singaporeans characterised as being unrealistic or too demanding with their inflated salary expectations, even though results of the Ministry of Education’s Graduate Employment Surveys (GES) show that the expected starting salaries – especially that of potential university graduates – are very much in reach.