Polytechnic graduate unable to find full time employment, ends up working as part-time cashier

I met a young man in his mid 20s. He graduated from a polytechnic with a diploma in aeronautical engineering and went to serve his National Service. On completing his full time NS, he could not get a job. He had to work as a part time cashier to earn $6 an hour.

I find this strange. There should be business for the aircraft maintenance industry, due to the explosion in air travel, particularly for the low cost airlines.

This is an industry where Singapore should be competitive. The planes are costly, so the airlines should be able to pay a high fee for aircraft maintenance of a high standard.

He told me that the aircraft maintenance requires a lot of space and Singapore is short of space. That is why not many jobs are available in Singapore.

I do not accept this reasoning. Perhaps the cost of rental of space is a major factor. I do not think the aircraft maintenance companies are using foreigners, as the expected salary of this young man is quite modest.

There is a problem here. I do not know what is the real problem.

This post first appeared on the FaceBook wall of Mr Tan Kin Lian. You may wish to share your perspectives and afterthoughts with him on the page itself.


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