68% of post-graduate students are foreigners!

Photo:John Walker/CC BY 2.0Photo:John Walker/CC BY 2.0

Is 68% of post-graduate students being non-Singaporeans very high?

I refer to the article “Subsidies for master’s courses to be removed or reduced for foreign, PR students: Ong Ye Kung” (Today, Mar 5).

It states that “From 2011 to 2016, locals formed 32 per cent of the postgraduate intake on average, while international students and PRs comprised 63 per cent and 5 per cent respectively. This was revealed by Mr Ong in Parliament last July.”

Isn’t 68 per cent of “the postgraduate intake on average” being non-Singaporeans a rather high proportion?

Are there any public universities that give such a high percentage to foreign students?

Also, instead of just giving the statistics of the postgraduate intake on average from 2011 to 2016 – what is the percentage now of non-Singaporeans in the total enrolment in the public universities?

Is it higher than 68 per cent?

As to “Changes in subsidies — which will not affect Singaporeans — will generate S$25 million in savings annually, noted Mr Ong, adding that this will be channelled to support shorter, industry-relevant modular courses for Singaporeans and PRs at both undergraduate and post-graduate levels” – why are we not using some of this $25 million in savings manually, to reduce the fees of Singaporeans (which remain unchanged) or to freeze any fee increase in the next few years for Singaporean students?

Leong Sze Hian

About the Author

Leong Sze Hian has served as the president of 4 professional bodies, honorary consul of 2 countries, an alumnus of Harvard University, authored 4 books, quoted over 1500 times in the media , has been a radio talkshow host, a newspaper daily columnist, Wharton Fellow, SEACeM Fellow, columnist for theonlinecitizen and Malaysiakini, executive producer of Ilo Ilo (40 international awards), Hotel Mumbai (associate producer), invited to speak more than 200 times in about 40 countries, CIFA advisory board member, founding advisor to the Financial Planning Associations of 2 countries. He has 3 Masters, 2 Bachelors degrees and 13 professional  qualifications.