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2022 APCDA/IAEVG Conference 100% Virtual

It is with great sadness that we have canceled the in-person part of this conference.  The number of people getting COVID in Singapore is rising rapidly, the restrictions on gatherings in Singapore are strict, and Singaporeans are not excited about meeting in-person under the current situation.  Many countries are still restricting travel among our member countries.  We hope 2023 will be better, but it seems it is just too soon to consider international travel.

A Virtual conference has advantages, such as no crowded breakout rooms with standing-room only, short tea breaks every hour (long enough for a personal bio break), and no travel or hotel expenses. Every session is recorded, in case you need to watch it at a different time. 

Of course, time zones are a problem for those who live halfway around the world from Singapore.  Some presentations could be in the middle of your night.  Find the times of the events in your own time zone by using our Time Zone Schedules. All sessions will be recorded, so you can listen to recorded presentations any time up to 3 months after the conference.

This conference is packed with content because it is a double conference, sponsored by both APCDA and IAEVG and drawing in experts from around the world.  The first week, May 16-20, includes 4 simultaneous presentations each hour, 6 hours a day, so you have lots of presentations to choose from.  The sessions will be held every other day, so you have Tuesday and Thursday to catch up with other activities.  The second week was intended to be in-person, so it contains back-to-back days. On Tuesday morning, May 24, you have the option of attending a 3-hour workshop called a Professional Development Institute. Riz Ibrahim, Executive Director of CERIC (Canadian Education and Research Institute for Counselling), will lead the workshop, entitled Guiding Principles of Career Development: Career Work in Action, which will share the secrets of Canada’s successful career guidance system throughout the lifespan.  Wednesday and Thursday, May 25 and 26, will be packed with keynotes, high-powered panel discussions, and award ceremonies.  The second Professional Development Institute – this one devoted to the job search – is on Friday morning, May 27.  Ms. Elisabeth Sanders-Park will present 5 Keys to Helping People Start Careers.  This powerful workshop is design for career practitioners who help people find jobs and want to help them get their careers started right.

There is so much more to this conference.  Please see the Conference Program Book.  Version 1 (currently available) lists all of the practical sessions and skill builder sessions.  Research sessions are being added now and will be available soon (Version 2).  Did you notice that Dr. Norm Amundson and Dr. Spencer Niles have teamed up with their daughters for a panel on Hope-Action through Intergenerational Mentoring? The other panelists are still to be determined (Version 3).  Keep checking back for the full picture.

At virtual conferences, we all miss the opportunities to network.  This conference offers several ways to network, both structured and unstructured.  During the hour before the sessions, the lunch hour, and the hour after the sessions, both IAEVG and APCDA will hold committee meetings (schedule to be determined).  Committee work is a great way to make friends internationally and to produce useful tools and events for others in our field.  Don’t want to work that hard?  Try our Discussion Sessions.  Designed around a current topic, each discussion session will use Zoom “breakout rooms” to help you share your ideas and learn from others.  These 50 minutes session offer plenty of time to meet others and to get some great ideas from other attendees.  Another way to strike up a discussion is to ask a question on the Event Feed.  People interested in connecting on that topic can click a button and get connected to you.  The Lounge will be open every conference day from 9 am to 6 pm Singapore time.  When you sit at a table, others can see that you are there and join you.  This is a great way to meet others at the conference.  If you hope to find others who have something in common with you, enter the Fun Facts Contest or the Singapore Experiences Contest.  Both offer the opportunity to share something personal.  This allows others to read your post, then connect with you during the conference.

Check out these great opportunities, and register when you are ready.  The Earlybird Registration ends at the end of February.

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Conference FAQs

Please send questions about the conference to Info@AsiaPacificCDA.org.  Here are answers to the questions received so far.

What will the 2022 Conference include?

Due to the Omicron Variant of COVID, the in-person conference option has been cancelled.  This conference will be 100% Virtual.

Version 1 of the Conference Program Book is available now and includes the Skill-Builder and Practice-related presentations.  The IAEVG part of the program, which includes all Research Sessions and several Keynotes and Panel Discussions, will be added as soon as possible.

What will this virtual conference be like?

Our conference website will open in April for you to look around.  Last year attendees really enjoyed the Hubilo conference software, so we have arranged to use it again this year.  It includes an Event Feed (post comments, photos, or questions for other attendees), a Sessions page where all presentations will appear, a Lounge where you can meet other attendees and presenters, Sponsor Booths, Contests, and many networking features. 

All simultaneous presentations will be May 16-20.  On Monday, Wednesday, and Friday there will be 6 hours of presentations each day, with an hour break for lunch.  During each hour, four different presentations will be offered, so you have plenty of choices. The second week contains only plenary sessions, so we will all be together during that week.  On May 24, we offer an optional Professional Development Institute by Riz Ibrahim, Executive Director CERIC.  May 25 and 26 will be packed with keynotes and panel discussions for 6 hours on each day, with a one hour break for lunch.  On May 27, will be the second optional Professional Development Institute with Elisabeth Sanders-Park, Author, Thought Leader, Speaker, Trainer, and >President of WorkNet Solutions.  We have planned many networking activities for the Virtual audience, and we hope you will take advantage of them.  There will also be fun activities, such at the Cultural Gala and the Contests.

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Snapshot of Career Development Landscape in Singapore

by Hector Lin

Today, career development service is widely valued by Singaporeans. The availability of career development services has become widespread and accessible.

As a latecomer into the discipline, Singapore has accelerated the development of an ecosystem that aims to be comprehensive, inclusive and professional.

Below is a snapshot of the current career development landscape in Singapore. I would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge and celebrate those who have brought the service to this level of professionalism that it is today.

(1) Career development practices in: 

  • A. K-12 
    • Education & Career Guidance (ECG) centres set up for primary school, secondary school, junior college and polytechnic students 
  • B. Higher Education 
    • Career centres managed by private or autonomous universities, academies and schools 
  • C. Community 
    • National career centres for the general public: CareersConnect, e2i, UPME, and SGUnited Jobs and Skills Centre 
    • SG Enable for people with special needs 
  • D. Business / Industry 
    • Skills Framework (SFw) to provide key information on sector, career pathways, occupations/job roles, as well as existing and emerging skills required for the occupations/job roles. It also provides a list of training programmes for skills upgrading and mastery. 
    • National efforts were also supplemented by freelance coaches, private companies, professional associations and business federations. 

(2) Competencies that are required for career development practitioners

  • The Workforce Singapore (WSG) Career Development Framework (CDF) is a competency-based credentialing framework for career professionals. It aims to facilitate capability building and enable deeper and broader competency development among career professionals. Additionally, it allows stakeholders in the career development community to uphold professional standards and ethics amongst career professionals.
  • The CDF is developed by Workforce Singapore with input from the Ministry of Education (MOE) and the Employment and Employability Institute (e2i), who are key stakeholders in the provision of career services for students and adults respectively. It is aligned to international practices in Australia, Canada, the EU and the US, and emphasises the practice component undertaken by a career professional.

(3) Professional training programmes for career practitioners

  • Career Advisory Programme (CAP) - The CAP is an introductory programme for professionals who provide career basic education and career advisory as a secondary role in their work.
  • Career Facilitation Programme (CFP) - The CFP is a training programme for career practitioners who provide education and career advisory service as a primary role in their work. It aims to equip career practitioners with advanced education and career advisory competencies.
  • Career Supervision Programme (CSP) - The CSP is a programme to equip career development supervisors with supervisory skills so that they can supervise career practitioners and manage the quality of career services delivered.
  • Career Management Programme (CMP) - The CMP is a programme for career practitioners in the role of planning, supervising and implementing career services. Upon completion, they will be able to develop and adapt career tools to local contexts as well as promote career knowledge in various local and international platforms.

(4) Credentials available

  • Certified Career Advisor (CCA) - A CCA is able to provide basic career and training advisory (including details on government initiatives such as SkillsFuture etc.) to clients using simple profiling tools in a one-to-one or group setting.
  • Certified Career Practitioner (CCP) - A CCP is able to apply career development theories and tools to help clients make education, career and training choices through effective one-to-one and group facilitation.
  • Certified Career Clinical Supervisor (CCCS) - A CCCS is able to supervise and guide career practitioners to provide and implement effective interventions for clients on a one-to-one or group basis.
  • Certified Career Services Manager (CCSM) - A CCSM is able to plan and supervise the implementation of career services, develop and adapt career tools to local context, and promote career knowledge in various local and international platforms.

Celebrating the progress we made so far 

As a community, we have accelerated the professional development of the practice, which can only function effectively as an ecosystem. Career coaching in Singapore is made possible by many people who mostly join the profession motivated by their passion to serve.

The community consists of public and private coaches, policymakers, public officers, community collaborators and countless allies. And the community will drive continual innovation and adaptation to the evolving needs of the population.

Most of us need help and direction at some point in our careers. Whether you need to enhance your self-concept or to find a suitable job soon for physiological or aspirational reasons, collaborate with your coach.

An entire community's effort has been created to enhance your experience and exposure to an impactful career conversation. They are your partners to help you build a fulfilling, purposeful and inspirational career.

Hector Lin is Sales Director, SEA at impress.ai. He is currently serving as the Secretary-General of People & Career Development Association (PCDA) and Country Representative for Singapore in Asia-Pacific Career Development Association (APCDA).

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Singapore - Where Cultures, Religions and Passions Meet

by Sing Chee Wong

The Singapore historical records are covered in the mists of time.  In Malay history, early records called it the "island at the end of a peninsula" or “Pulau Ujong.”  Later, a town there was known as “Temasek” meaning “Sea Town.”  According to legend, the area gained a new name in the 1299 when Sang Nila Utama, an Indonesian Prince, was on a hunting trip and saw an animal he had never seen before. He founded a city where he saw the animal, naming it “The Lion City” or Singapura, meaning “simha” (lion) and “pura” (city).

Modern Singapore was founded in 1819 by Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles. Sir Raffles was employed by the Dutch East India Company, a British company, to manage an outpost on the island of Sumatra.  He was determined to destroy the Dutch mercantile monopoly in the area and open a British gateway for trade with China and Japan. The island at the end of the Malay peninsula was well positioned and in 1818 he secured the rights to set up a city and chose the name Singapore. By May 1819, the initial five-hundred villagers had grown to five-thousand merchants, soldiers, and administrators.

The Raffles Hotel is an important landmark in Singapore, although it was built in 1887 (long after his death).  The hotel represents the island’s colonial history. The main building, showcasing neo-Renaissance architecture with high ceilings and vast verandahs, was completed in 1899.  It was restored again in 2019 and now combines a fresh look with historical elegance.

For most of its history, immigration has been the major contributor to growth in Singapore. The majority of immigrants to Singapore came from three major ethnic groups: China, Malaysia/Indonesia, and India. The map to the left marks in red or blue the areas contributing the largest numbers of immigrants to Singapore.

Outside Greater China, Singapore is the only country in the world where people of Chinese descent constitute a majority of the population and are well represented in all levels of society, politically and economically.  When Singapore became a British colony, many of the first immigrants were Peranakans, or descendants of Chinese who had lived in Malaysia for several generations. Most of them were traders who could speak Chinese and Malay, though some were also English-educated and could communicate with the British. By the census of 1826, there were already more Chinese than Malays. Most of the early Chinese migrants to Singapore were males because it was not considered appropriate for Chinese women to immigrate with their husbands.  Husbands sent money home to support their family and some returned to China to retire.  Others, eventually married Malaysian women.

Singapore's infrastructure and environment might seem Western, but on closer observation, aspects of Chinese culture are found in all corners of Singapore. This includes the widespread use of different Chinese dialects, Chinese writings, press and entertainment media, a thriving Chinese pop culture, Chinese Clan associations, Chinese cultural festivals, Chinese opera, Chinese religious activities, Chinese bookshops etc.  For the tourist, Singapore’s China Town is a great place to see traditional Chinese culture and Chinese food is available everywhere.

Malaysians have always played an important role in Singapore.  The Raffles Plan of 1822 divided Singapore into different sections according to ethnic groups.  A large area which is now known as Kampong Glam was created for use by Malays and other Muslims.  Arabic traders settled there and built shops, restaurants, and mosques.  Since Singapore’s independence, Malaysians have continued to move to Singapore seeking better opportunities and Muslims currently represent 15% of the population.

Indians form the third largest ethnic group with 9% of the population.  When Singapore became a British colony, Indians mainly comprised young men who came as workers, soldiers and convicts. By the mid-20th century, a settled community had emerged, with a more balanced gender ratio and a better spread of age groups. Singapore Indians are linguistically and religiously diverse, with ethnic Tamils and Hindus forming majorities. The local Indian culture has endured and evolved over almost 200 years. By the 1990s, it had grown somewhat distinct from contemporary South Asian cultures, even as Indian elements became diffused within a broader Singaporean culture. Since then, new immigrants have increased the size and complexity of the local Indian population. Low-cost carriers, cable television and the Internet now connect the Indian Singaporean community with the culture of India and the Indian diaspora. The Indian culture is most visible in Little India, which is full of temples, restaurants and shops.

Singapore continued to develop as trading hub.  In 1924, a causeway opened the northern part to Johor Bahru, Malaysia. Singapore was attacked and occupied by the Japanese during World War II.  When the Japanese surrendered in 1945, the island returned to British control.  In 1963, Singapore joined the Federation of Malaya to form Malaysia. However, social unrest and disputes resulted in Singapore's expulsion from Malaysia. Singapore became an independent republic on 9 August 1965.

Facing severe unemployment and a housing crisis, Singapore embarked on a modernization program continuing through the 1970s that focused on establishing a manufacturing industry, developing large public housing estates, and investing heavily in public education and infrastructure. It also invested in the greening of the city, turning Singapore into a “City in a Garden.” Lee Kuan Yew served as Prime Minister of Singapore from 1959 to 1990 and provided steady guidance for growth and stability. By the 1990s, the country had become one of the world's most prosperous nations, with a highly developed free market economy, strong international trading links. It now has the highest per capita gross domestic product in Asia. It is ranked 10th by the World Bank on GNI (Gross National Income per capita) for 2019 and 9th on the UN Human Development Index for 2017.

Another landmark is the tall metal sculpture entitled “Momentum.”  It symbolizes the upward cycle of progress, the energy and momentum of the downtown district, Singapore, and its people.  Singapore’s diversity is its strength. The many communities may have their own festivities, traditions and practices, yet you’ll find Singaporeans celebrating all of these festivals as one people.

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