Sad female employee sitting on the stairs.

SINGAPORE: A 24-year-old Long-Term Visit Pass (LTVP) holder lamented on social media about the lack of job opportunities in Singapore’s competitive market, especially for those in liberal arts like her, despite sending 500 applications.

She shared, “I finished university in January and started my job search seriously in February, and now close to 5 months of job hunting. I came to SG when I was young, have tried to apply for PR but never seem to get approved, so now I am on LTVP and have a tuition grant to fulfil.” 

“I do really want to kick-start my career but I have been sending close to 500 applications and only 2 responded, which I did not pass for the interview because the company said that my experience might not be what they are looking for,” she added.

She also lamented that most companies won’t even consider her application because they don’t have quotas for foreign hires.

She explained that it’s especially challenging in the liberal arts compared to fields like IT. “What makes it worse is that I am in the liberal arts field (marketing, events, and linguistic background), which makes it harder compared to foreigners in the IT field in getting a job (not to say that the IT field is easy or anything), because Singapore has a lot of talented people in these fields,” she explained.

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She admitted feeling discouraged and apprehensive each time she browses job sites. “It’s a harsh reality check,” she confessed. “I’m feeling really dejected and lost.”

Despite the challenges, she remains determined to start her career in the events, marketing, and linguistics sector regardless of the company or job nature. “I really want to work in my field,” she emphasised. “But with my bond restrictions, going overseas isn’t an option.”

One local commenter empathised with her plight, questioning the practicality of pursuing a liberal arts degree in Singapore. “Why on earth would you go for a liberal arts degree? In Singapore of all places?” he said, pointing out that Singapore is “pretty much the least creative country in SEA.”

Others offered practical advice and encouragement. One suggested broadening her job search beyond specific sectors, recommending to try temporary administrative roles as a potential stepping stone. Another advised exploring any remote jobs to raise her chances of securing employment.

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The LTVP-holder encouraged others in the same situation as her, saying, “Hang in there.” /TISG

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Featured image by Depositphotos