Upskilling in Times of Crisis

Living through a pandemic or an economic recession can be demoralising for many reasons, but it provides the best opportunity to develop yourself and to upskill!
Sarah Si
Sarah Si
Editor, gradsingapore
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Since COVID-19 reached Singapore’s shores, chances are, if you’re a graduate, you’ve been cooped up at home and sending out countless job applications. But the numerous companies you’ve applied to haven’t come back to you yet, and recent stringent measures put in place to curb the spread of the virus in Singapore is leaving you in a bit of a panic.

But here’s the thing – if you have the time and energy to work yourself up into a state of anxiety, why can’t you put said time and energies into something better instead?

Focus on boosting existing skills you built in university or picking up new ones. There’s literally no better time – many events have gone digital and many resources are online, often for free.

Since there’s nothing stopping you (except yourself), why don’t you look at these resources that you can use to boost your employability?


Usually hosted by industry experts, webinars help you learn more about a specific topic or interest, often in 60 minutes or less. Typical webinars are very convenient to attend, and normally only need a registration before a link is sent. The moment the time to attend it comes, all you have to do is click on the link and tune into the session. You don’t even need to travel! Moreover, because these sessions are held in real-time, you can fire off any pressing questions during the Q&A you have while networking from the comfort of your own home.

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Go virtual

Because events normally held physically are being held up indefinitely by the virus, both career and networking events alike can now be attended virtually, like gradsingapore’s Enginuity. Virtual events can include demonstrations and lectures, and typically happen like over platforms such as Zoom and Facebook Live. Even though they were initially conceived as the digital answer to in-person events, virtual events have taken on a live and structure of their own with live text chats, and even offer participants the opportunity to get “on stage” with moderators and leaders of the event.

So, make the most out of every event you attend by making your presence felt virtually to potential employers by talking to them over the live chat, or leverage the live video feed and microphone (if you choose to speak instead of type) to boost your profile. You can even broadcast the events you’ll be attending by tagging them on social media with the event hashtag, and network with other attendees who’ll be there!

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Sign up for digital courses

Because so many resources have been made available online, it’s never been easier to pursue further education. With the recent step up in measures keeping you at home, you can now turn your attention to completing courses and pursuing certifications during your spare time!

Employers have shown a preference for applicants who either have already earned certifications or are in the midst of completing one for a number of reasons – it shows a candidate's initiative and willingness to learn throughout his or her career, and can prove useful when you're looking to show off your mastery in a certain area!

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Due to the amount of time spent indoors and most things forced to move at a snail’s pace, take the chance to beef up your resume by picking up new skills that can either open new doors for you or help you sharpen present skill sets. At the very least, your hard work and initiative will impress your prospective employers during the interview and help you stand out as a top candidate.