Hospitality and tourism students can tap $1.4m scholarship by MBS and Las Vegas Sands

The scholarship was launched by Marina Bay Sands and parent company Las Vegas Sands. PHOTO: REUTERS

SINGAPORE - From 2023, more than 100 Singaporean students pursuing hospitality or tourism-related courses can tap a new US$1million (S$1.4 million) bond-free scholarship programme.

The scholarship was launched by Marina Bay Sands (MBS) and parent company Las Vegas Sands, which signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with all five polytechnics and the Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT) on Monday (Aug 29).

The MOU signing at MBS was witnessed by Minister of State for Trade and Industry Alvin Tan.

The Sands Hospitality Scholarship programme, which is open to second-year students studying related courses at the six higher institutes of learning, will run for at least three years.

Mr Ron Reese, senior vice-president of global communications and corporate affairs at Las Vegas Sands, said Las Vegas Sands and MBS' commitment to Singapore had inspired the scholarship.

"We have been in the market for 12 years. We run a very large hospitality operation here, and so we do want to invest in the next generation of hospitality leaders and this gave us a good platform to be able to do that," he added.

MBS has close to 10,000 employees, with two-thirds of them Singaporeans or permanent residents.

Over the three years of the scholarship, about 19 students per polytechnic and about 14 students from SIT can apply for the scholarship.

Recipients can use the scholarship funds for their expenses, such as tuition fees and course materials.

They can also apply for internship and full-time roles in the hospitality and tourism sectors such as housekeeping, food and beverage as well as events management.

Mr Chew Kian Beng, course chair of Temasek Polytechnic's diploma in hospitality and tourism management, said the scholarship will benefit the poly's students from the diploma in tourism and hospitality management course and the diploma in culinary and catering management course.

"It sort of enforces the need to actually develop manpower talent in this industry, so students from these two courses stand to benefit a lot from the scholarship," he added.

Mr Tan, who is also Minister of State for Culture, Community and Youth, said companies must continue to invest in their people today, particularly as the Covid-19 pandemic has catalysed a labour crunch in the hospitality industry globally, including in Singapore.

He added that companies are using and will continue to use technology to redesign jobs to allow their workers to do higher-value work.

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.