Unemployed and underemployed Singaporeans share their stories as photo of “jobless graduate” goes viral


A photo of an “unemployed graduate” sitting at Raffles Place holding a sign that she has been rejected by 78 prospective employers has been going viral online.

While the woman in the photo has garnered intense support online, it turns out that the “unemployed graduate” is just an actor participating in a publicity stunt to promote an app called Sapio that links customers up with industry leaders.

Another actor promoting the app was spotted in another corner at Raffles Place carry a sign that says “MBA can eat or not” while dressed in a graduation gown. Behind both actors, a sign saying “Don’t be like me, download Sapio!” can be seen.

Despite the demonstration being a gimmick, several kindhearted netizens who thought that the actors were really unemployed encouraged them by sharing tips on how they can land a job.

Several netizens who are unemployed or underemployed themselves also shared their own situations online:


The proportion of fresh graduates who are able to secure full-time jobs has been slipping.

According to the Straits Times, a survey of 11,628 fresh graduates of full-time courses from National University of Singapore (NUS), Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and Singapore Management University (SMU) showed that the proportion of graduates who secured full-time permanent employment dropped from 79.9 per cent in 2016 to 78.4 per cent in 2017.


  1. That is true. Reason: Most headhunters are foreigners and they bring in their own kind. Sadly MOM outsource it work to all these headhunters and guess what I heard for a headhunter some two years when I had a call from a headhunter is I wanted foreigners.. “If you go direct to find a foreigner you don’t stand a chance but if you use us we can get you the foreigner you want” I hope this is not true. Sounds terrible.

  2. Too many foreigners. Are they really QUALIFY?
    Is true that THEY employ their OWN KIND.
    Once you see an INDIAN interviewer, dont waste your time. You will not be hired.
    Even if you are hired, you will not get anywhere.

  3. LHL is a fantastic gambler . He has gambled away his siblings’ trust, gambled away his nephew’s credibility, gambled away the future of the many young, and now he is betting his last wager on the impeding GST hike . Either he wins all or loses all . Nevermind if he loses , he will just retire and pass the mess to the next government to clear .

  4. In the IT sector, recruitment Agencies like RW, provide ready and contant supply of IT personnel from Phillipines and India to our employers resulting in cost savings for both HR and the company in question.

    In our hospitals, foreign doctors and nurses were encouraged by department heads to bring in more of their kind. In one of our hospitals near Novena, heard that a Filipino doctor was given 3 weeks leave to go back to her hometown to recruit more of her friends and classmates to come and work here. Our failed policy in not anticipating and increasing the local University intake to meet demand to blame.

    Heard it is very much the same in banking sector.

    In the push to crowd the island with 10 million, the efforts unlikely to abate.

  5. Goes to proof that academic success in only part of the life journey. The other half…..go figure out yourself if you want to survive…:)
    Opps l’m running late to send these foods on my motobike. Need the money to save for bigger things. Like opening my own food delivery service in the future. I call it Food-pandai…:)

  6. don’t let these grads fool you…….they’re perfectly happy without jobs…….Sinkies are the most unhappy people with their jobs in the world………..thus, they vote for Puki And Pundek to bring in hordes of FTs to take all the jobs……..