LIT DISCOvery Inspired Youths & Young Working Adults With Interactive Activities

Youths from various educational backgrounds and young working adults gathered at Marina Bay Sands for LIT DISCOvery on Sat (1 Jun) for what was on paper a standard career fair. But if you’ve been attending career fairs regularly, you’d quickly notice that this wasn’t a run-of-the-mill event.

It started with registration at noon, before Education Minister Mr Ong Ye Kung himself kicked off the event with a speech highlighting the importance of constantly upgrading our skills in this rapidly evolving economy.

Organised by Young NTUC and Lifelong Learning Institute, and powered by National Youth Council, the event saw industry leaders sharing highly personal stories with around 800 bright-eyed youths, touching on a diverse range of topics, some including tough decisions they took to get to where they are today.

Artificial Intelligence and its impact on fresh grads

Of all the buzzwords floating around today, one that almost always pops up – because of its ability to drastically affect the career landscape – is Artificial Intelligence (AI). Thankfully, in this area, the experts have some good news.

Liu Feng-Yuan, CEO & Co-founder of BasisAI

Liu Feng-Yuan, the CEO of Singapore-based startup BasisAI, sought to clear the confusion surrounding AI. He assured everyone that there’s no reason to fear a world takeover by rogue AI — we simply haven’t reached such an advanced stage yet.

Kevin Wo, Managing Director of Microsoft Singapore

This was echoed by fellow industry expert Kevin Wo, Managing Director of Microsoft. Even though we’re far from world-dominating AI, he urged jobseekers to be on their toes because some jobs, especially repetitive ones, will be displaced.

David Gledhill, Chief Information Officer and Head of Group Technology & Operations at DBS Bank

David Gledhill, the Chief Information Officer of DBS, on the other hand, warned that youths aspiring to the banking sector must be prepared to adapt to increased automation in the industry. This is because banks need to be constantly innovating, and shows that job security can be incredibly varied, based on industries.

Abraham Thomas, Managing Director of IBM Singapore

On pursuing your passion, Abraham Thomas, Managing Director of IBM, gave us valuable lessons on making the effort to pursue what you really want in your career.

He cited his personal experience, where he made the decision to uproot his family when he was in his 30s to live in India and South Africa. Most people would be resistant to the idea of a complete change in environment, especially when they’re already settled down with a family. But hard decisions have to be made if you want to move up the ladder – a lesson fresh grads can and should learn early.

Interactive booths with interview simulations

The conference hall where the talks were held wasn’t the only area at the event buzzing with activity. Outside, a ‘career marketplace’ of hands-on activities was ongoing.

Interview Arena

The Interview Arena allowed participants to undergo a job interview simulation with a partner, under the careful watch of a career guide.

Here, participants took turns with a friend to role play as interviewer and interviewee, with direct and personalised advice from the Young NTUC Youth Career Network career guide at each step. This helps you immediately recognise and correct mistakes you wouldn’t otherwise realise you’re making.

Job application booths

Now, with a better understanding of how to ace job interviews, the next step would be to put those skills to good use.

Attendees got to meet 10 potential employers at the event and apply for job openings across a myriad of industries. Employers at the event included Wantedly, IBM, Circles.Life and InterContinental Hotels Group, with a wide range of positions available from software engineers to business development executives.

Brand archetype quiz

However, if you’re aren’t sure what career suits you best, you could first choose to take a lighthearted personality test to find out your ‘hero archetype’, with interesting types like Wizard and Genie. This quiz works like the Myer-Briggs test, except with questions and results more catered to showing what jobs you’re suited to.

You will then learn the recommendations, based on data, for careers best suited for you. A lot has been said about Millennials and Gen Z-ers and our preference for chasing passions, so in the event the results are not quite what you expect, you might have to balance living your dreams and being practical.

Tips on building a startup by successful entrepreneurs

The last part of the conference was a panel comprising 3 experienced entrepreneurs, Christopher Yeo, Teo Ser Luck and Rachel Lim, who shared some hard truths about entrepreneurship.

This portion of the event caters to young individuals who have always had dreams to start a business, but don’t quite know where to start. Through their experiences, they make it clear that the journey is tough, especially in Singapore where having sufficient capital is always a concern. Having the right mindset, though, provides an edge to succeed where competitors might not.

Trigger your learning at the next LIT DISCOvery event

LIT DISCOvery is just the first event in the Learning Is Triggered (LIT) series this year, so if you’re motivated to find out more about having practical career goals, keep a look out for updates on the next event here.

With industry leaders sharing their wealth of experience and guided activities for youths to discover their own career aspirations, LIT DISCOvery is a convenient place for confused youths to think of their career aspirations and take tangible steps towards their goals.

You can also keep an eye out for the latest LIT events on Young NTUC’s Facebook page.

This post is brought to you in collaboration with Young NTUC.