Google trainee makes the most of new opportunities after being retrenched

Mr Muhammad Khairunnizam Lukman is one of 1,650 locals who started a training programme overseen by tech giant Google.
Mr Muhammad Khairunnizam Lukman is one of 1,650 locals who started a training programme overseen by tech giant Google.ST PHOTO: CHONG JUN LIANG

SINGAPORE - After being let go from his job in corporate sales for an events company last March, Mr Muhammad Khairunnizam Lukman decided he needed to tap his training and explore the IT industry.

The 34-year-old, who has a diploma from Singapore Polytechnic in business management and IT, is one of 1,650 locals who started a training programme overseen by tech giant Google, as part of its Skills Ignition SG initiative.

Mr Khairunnizam, who began his course in September, had stumbled upon information about the programme on social media.

His brother, who works in the IT industry, encouraged him to pursue the cloud technology course, and told him that it would provide him with good career progression opportunities.

Mr Khairunnizam, a father of three children aged between three and seven, said he has since picked up new skills like programming.

About 60 per cent of the participants in the six-month programme are aged 40 and above. They receive a monthly training allowance of $1,500 and will receive a certificate after they complete the course.

Mr Khairunnizam had initially thought that the programme would be very difficult, but has gained confidence through practice and guidance from the course's trainers.

"The biggest thing is that when I see people who are older than me, who are willing to learn and upskill themselves, it gives me a sense of motivation.

"Learning should be a lifelong journey. It's not something that you should stop halfway... and we should always be open to learn new things," he said.