Dear Editors,

There are degree mills, and these can be categorised into degree “mills” and “degree” mills.

But who cares, that just complicates the assertion that in a job market that places a premium on graduates, the foreigners seem to be winning, and with fake degrees nonetheless.

We need to take a good hard look at why we place a premium on these certificates, and move toward a job market that looks at experience, real skills, professional networks and willingness to work hard. Papers don’t mean much after the first two years at the workplace – mainly because the real world and schools are often eons apart, but that’s another story.

When I say we should look at experience etc. and not papers, I’m not referring to that recently announced government programme that is trying to get everyone to take non-graduate jobs. That’s just impractical when you look at the cost of living here.

I’m talking about actually offering graduate jobs, at graduate salary levels, to non-graduates with experience, skills and networks to do the job. Once we do that, we will not have this problem of whose degree is better, which university is higher ranked, why my fake PhD is better than your BA from NUS, Degree and so on.

Who better to lead the charge than the employers? Actually, they’re the only ones who can lead this charge. Why? Because they do the hiring, that’s why. That’s also why we have so many bogus graduates coming into Singapore – they insisted to the government that these bogus grads could do the job.

So let’s clean up our act, first by reporting these foreigners with fake degrees to MOM, and then by getting our employers to realise how to select a good candidate.

Just my two cents worth.

J. Yim

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