Overseas Singaporean Unit x Singaporean Speaker Series

I attended a Singaporean Speaker series event at the Westin Ballroom Sydney yesterday where they invite a guest of honour from SG to Sydney so that we can learn more about the situation back home, and network and stuff. Thought it would be good to go there for some meaningful insights about work and careers and stuff and they even said they’ll be networking (I’m bad at this). The invited guest of honour was an entrepreneur from Fraser’s Hospitality group and it’s my first time attending this kind of formal event in Sydney (or even in my whole life at all) so I didn’t know what to expect. It was even stated in the dress code that we should wear business suits!!


Attending a formal networking event like this, office wear and all were VERY NEW TO ME. As a design student upon graduation, I was always taught to dress funky, unique and edgy during presentations and what not. Never have I ever properly worn (or own, that is) a formal office wear to a presentation etc in my three years of Design school in Singapore. The vibe is always really laid back, really chill and full of self-expression.

Anyways, cos I’m a design student that knows NOTHING, or little, about business or medical or law or engineering or whatever right (you get the gist), all these “common” fields always seem very foreign and strange to a person like me belonging in the creative industry. If you told me the music industry, the arts, the dance or theatre..it would not be so bad, because I am familiar with design and the arts anyway. Now that I’m currently pursuing a major in Media and cultural studies, these subjects are still not conventional fields of study. I went into the event expecting the speaker to be talking about stocks or financial crisis or something that’s reaaaally dry and boring. (ask my business friend, I don’t even know what’s the difference between a debit card and a credit card). Don’t laugh at me, I know now. HAHA. My point is: throw me business lingo like “opportunity cost” or “revenue” and I’ll be fainting, let alone carry a proper conversation with all the higher ups? (the event was organised by the Overseas Singaporean Unit, and they invited lots of professionals and influential people).


Surprisingly, I was attentive throughout the whole time the speaker was speaking. The talk was engaging, inspiring, and he made it really easy for me to understand! I had always wanted to be an entrepreneur since young but don’t know how (and never made the effort to study business). I still firmly believe that the connection between the creative industry and the business industry is still there, though. I loved the part where the speaker spoke about millennials and how because of how social they are (social media and all), the market demands are changing at such a rapid rate. I love developing new ideas for business innovation and I’m really, really inspired (to be honest).


I was once being told by a lecturer that I had a millennial mindset after voicing out my hopes and goals in life to her. I think I’m a typical millennial. Someone who looks for experience rather than just a simple product or service. I do agree that many businesses, in order to thrive in the competitive market these days, have to search for their ‘Unique selling point’ and sell to the customers an idea instead of a product. Businesses these days would invest in developing a meaningful idea attached to a pair of shoes, for example, rather than competing with all the other good looking shoe designs out there.

(the food was good)

Anyway that was what I’ve learned. Ever since I came to Sydney I realised this country is bursting with opportunities but I don’t think Singapore loses out in this area, either. Ok, Singapore might lose out to the UK, US, or China, but certainly not Sydney.

I’ve spoken with a few people ever since I came here—people who decided to stay after graduation and have worked here for such a long time. People who decided that the pay is higher here, the working life is slacker than Singapore (although pace of living, I would say, is the same). I had Malaysian friends complain and don’t want to go back because they think the Malaysian economy is bad. It’s true though, but talking about stuff like these sends a chill down my spine because I could never know my future and what’s in store of me. I don’t have control because getting a PR is actually SO HARD these days (will talk about this + a talk about migration in my school in my next post). It’s not that I am thinking of staying, I don’t think I am because it has always been my plan to go back.


Turns out, I’m going to take up the role of Media in the Singaporean Students’ Association committee. tbh when I joined the club I expected it to be a fun thing and didn’t imagine myself taking up any role at all HAHHA. Well, now that I’m in (not officially yet though, waiting for the previous batch to hand-over during AGM) I’m excited for the projects in store because I’m going to be working beside Darren, our new president!


Darren and I knew each other through a mutual friend and I’ve always known him to be really kind and nice. I couldn’t count the number of favours I got from him already, from cooking me noodles to giving me free mooncakes or even space to put and wash my contact lenses, to sending me home late at night….so thankful.

I was initially hesitating when Douglas asked me if I wanted to take up the role because….what, a newbie in the first sem who barely joined for 2 months suddenly stepping up to committee?!…I also had a lot of commitments already on my plate. Global Leadership Program, church, school, part-time work, FOCUS (Christian campus group), social life, leisure/travel, doing housework and buying groceries…that is far too many things to take care of man. “I would be a Wonderwoman if I accept any more roles,” I thought.

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Somehow….I got in hahah. I just hope that I can lead Singapore to greater heights and serve properly because I don’t like to promise something I couldn’t commit to. Hope that by God’s grace, I can have a smooth management because we’re dealing with a great amount of national pride right here. Also, I felt that leaving Singapore made me become more patriotic. Don’t you think so? Almost everybody here is whitewashed, speaks with an accent (even if they are Asian). I felt absolutely out of place with a Singlish accent and found myself (many times), altering my accent just so people can understand what I’m saying.

However, that also made me unique in a way I guess. And when you are unique, the sense of national identity and belonging kick in more. I really begin to see my own roots because people literally can tell I’m a Singaporean by the way I speak.


This week was good. I had lunch with Joyce, a Taiwanese friend I made in FOCUS campus group and it was really fun getting to know her. It happened to be mooncake festival that day so I brought mooncakes to school to share with her. We’re having lunch together again this coming week!

I also received my results and all that this week and some of them were good, others, not so good. Did my IT test a few days ago and did SO BADLY I was almost crying. When I walked out of the room I was just angry, I didn’t know who or at what, but I was just angry. I did

I received my results and all that this week and some of them were good, others, not so good. Did my IT test a few days ago and did SO BADLY I was almost crying. When I walked out of the room I was just angry, I didn’t know who or at what, but I was just angry. I did study, but I couldn’t remember anything. I think I might fail because I actually remember that I have studied that topic but I couldn’t memorise the exact words properly. So angry. I would forgive myself if it’s something like TV & International media but IT & society is supposed to be the easiest unit I can score points in.

Anyways, I got full marks for one of the assignments in this same unit so I hope that will pull my bad test results up. So happy to get 100% because I’ve never gotten it in a while! It was that assignment where I stayed up the whole night to finish it okay, so glad my efforts paid off. And Liang Kuang was accompanying me via Skype till dawn.

So touched T.T why do I have so many guardian angels in my life.<3

I don’t even know how to thank him. He didn’t have work to do that day, it wasn’t like skyping-while-both-of-us-do-our-work kinda thing. It was he-could-have-been-sleeping-but-he-chose-to-help-me kinda thing. I tend to procrastinate a lot so skyping him really helps when he keeps my attention at my desk instead of wandering off to somewhere else.

Other marks were shit HAHAHA. 68/100 for my essay and 56/80 for my first test. I’d be happy getting a pass, I don’t want to be too hard on myself.

Stayed home all day today to watch movies and read books because…what beats a weekend chilling with these two things? Just finished watching To The Bone, played by Lily Collins and have lots of thoughts about it. To The Bone is a movie about eating disorders and when I saw the trailer, I thought it was really interesting and had high hopes for the movie.

It is a great movie I suppose, for people who are looking for something fresh to watch because eating disorders is a unique theme that isn’t covered by most shows/movies out there. I would say the ending is too abrupt and I would like a proper conclusion though, like a happy ending. I also feel like the audience who haven’t struggled with eating disorders before wouldn’t really empathise with the character unless they themselves make a deliberate effort to do so.

Lily Collins did a good job, having struggled with eating disorders herself in the past. She actually lost weight healthily for the role and did it under a supervision of a nutritionist haha. Also, I did cry in the show. Guess which scene! (spoilers ahead)

I cried in the part where Eli’s mother fed her with the milk bottle and rocked her to sleep. To me, that is such a meaningful scene of kinship and healing, that overrides all embarrassment of being rocked like a baby even though she’s probably 19,20 years old? Eli obviously didn’t have proper love from her mum growing up. In other words, her mother probably failed as a mother, neglecting Eli due to issues and breakdowns of her own. I felt their relationship wasn’t very strong and is like that of an adoptive child to their biological mother. To me, mother-daughter relationship is very important and I could especially relate when I’m overseas now. I don’t know, that scene was powerful and it had all my attention that speaks very loudly about a mother’s love. I would also like to believe that was the turning point that healed Eli in the end. Nobody could help her and force her to eat if she didn’t help herself.

I felt kind of unproductive today. Whenever I stay home I feel like I need to accomplish something by staying home (groceries, assignments, laundry, whatever) because if not I might as well go out and explore. I don’t really fancy wasting time. I have so many things to accomplish ever since I came here, as well as personal goals but I’m moving forward at such a slow progress it frustrates me.

Please pray for me.

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