Kaplan sets up advisory boards to help align courses with national needs and industry trends

Kaplan Singapore has set up six industry advisory boards to better align its courses with the country's manpower needs and industry trends.
Kaplan Singapore has set up six industry advisory boards to better align its courses with the country's manpower needs and industry trends.PHOTO: KAPLAN

SINGAPORE - To better align its courses with the country's manpower needs and industry trends, Kaplan Singapore has set up six industry advisory boards in areas such as accounting, banking and finance, as well as engineering, IT and project management.

The advisory boards, made up of 46 senior executives from various sectors, provide input to make Kaplan's curriculum more industry-oriented. They do so by sharing industry viewpoints, employment demands and the qualities that employers look for in course graduates.

"The boards will point out the gaps in the existing programmes or in opportunities for students to prepare them to meet industry needs," said Mr Chris Harris, executive dean for schools and the senior director for industry engagement at Kaplan Singapore.

He also said that the quality and diversity of the industry leaders involved in the programme will allow for a more holistic understanding of each industry's needs.

Of the industry representatives, 21 are from multinational companies, and 25 from small- and medium-sized enterprises.

Ms Elim Chew, founder of 77th Street and the owner of Kokomama and I'm Kim Korean Barbecue, said: "Everything is being disrupted today and there's a need for us to help youth become more relevant and bring added value to the industries." Ms Chew chairs the hotels, food and beverage, tourism and events advisory board.

The programme has been running since July last year, and all six boards have held two meetings so far. The first meeting was used to discuss industry trends, and the second one looked at how the existing curriculum can be improved.

The programme, a first for private educational institutions, is aimed at producing career-ready graduates. One of the key indicators of measuring the success of the advisory boards is Kaplan's standing on graduate employment surveys in future.