SINGAPORE: The Singapore Management University (SMU) plans to pilot a work-study option that will allow students to take on up to six months of internship while concurrently studying on campus, the university said in a media release.
This is part of a series of enhancements to its undergraduate curriculum that it announced on Thursday (Sep 6), following a one-year study by the school’s Blue Ribbon Commission on Undergraduate Education.
Students will be able to alternate between working at least four days at their host company, and studying on campus for up to one day each week. They will be able to take up to two courses during the work-study period.
The university explained that the new option recognises the value of longer internship durations, which enable students to “better interlace institution-based learning with structured on-the-job training”.
It will also facilitate “more substantial and impactful work opportunities” within the attachment company.
The work-study option will be piloted through selected programmes, including the university’s recently launched Health Economics and Management second major. Based on the pilot run, SMU will review and refine it before rolling it out on a larger scale.
The university has also redesigned its undergraduate core curriculum into three inter-related pillars: capabilities, communities and civilisations. The new core curriculum will be implemented from academic year 2019-2020.
Under the new core curriculum, internships and community service will become credit-bearing programmes. Currently, the two programmes are graduation requirements for all undergraduates, but do not carry any credit.
From the current academic year, SMU will also introduce a new exploratory course scheme to encourage students to experiment with classes outside their major or their usual sphere of interest.