63-year-old keeps mind and body fit

Mr Lim (centre) goes for martial arts classes in wing chun and aikido every week, and has a blue belt in aikido. The freelance financial adviser enjoys picking up new skills, and graduated with a specialist diploma in business analytics from Republic
Mr Lim (centre) goes for martial arts classes in wing chun and aikido every week, and has a blue belt in aikido. The freelance financial adviser enjoys picking up new skills, and graduated with a specialist diploma in business analytics from Republic Polytechnic this year.ST PHOTO: DESMOND WEE

Mr Sebastian Lim has an accountancy degree from the then University of Singapore, from which he graduated in 1979, but that has not been enough for him.

The 63-year-old freelance financial adviser enjoys going for all sorts of classes to pick up new skills, from data analytics to martial arts.

He earned a specialist diploma in business analytics from Republic Polytechnic this year, after a year of classes which cost him less than $500 after subsidies.

 

Mr Lim, whose wife is also a financial adviser, attended night classes three times a week at the polytechnic's campus in Woodlands. He lives in Bedok.

"I read in the news about data analytics and I found it interesting in terms of how it is used to predict trends," he said. "It's a bit challenging after so many years of not being in school, especially when the course involved some mathematics and statistics. We also had to learn SQL, a data-based language."

But Mr Lim, who worked as an accountant for more than 20 years, said: "Is there an age limit to learning? Learning a new skill is an asset in life. My daughter has an online business and maybe what I've learnt can help her in customer analytics. It is also useful for businesses. It helps in decision-making and knowing how to make use of data."

Next, he wants to take classes in social sciences to "keep an open mind" and "understand social issues better".

He goes for martial arts classes in wing chun and aikido every week. "I'm still fit, and I want to learn self-defence," he said.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 16, 2016, with the headline '63-year-old keeps mind and body fit'. Print Edition | Subscribe