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September 2021 Press Release

Sumitomo Life Insurance and Temasek Polytechnic Run Inaugural Talent Explorer Programme for Persons with Disabilities across all Polytechnics and the ITE

The launching of TomoWork Talent Explorer Programme. Featuring Peter Lam and Tan Hwee Hoon from Temasek Polytechnic and Toru Shiomitsu and Mike Momota from Sumitomo Life Insurance

Singapore, 29th September 2021 – Following the very successful run of a digital talent accelerator programme earlier this year, Sumitomo Life Insurance (Sumitomo Life) and Temasek Polytechnic (TP) have now opened the programme to persons with disabilities (PWDs) from all local polytechnics and the Institute of Technical Education (ITE), across all academic years. From physical and sensory disabilities, to autism spectrum disorder and learning disabilities, this revamped programme has attracted 60 participants!

Called the Talent Explorer Programme (TEP), the programme provides opportunities for PWD to explore jobs and careers in high-demand sectors beyond their areas of study. They acquire hands-on, practical skills, engage in conversations with industry professionals, and learn the fundamentals of relevant job skills required in high-demand sectors in Singapore.

In delivering this TEP, Sumitomo Life, an employer of over 700 PWDs in Japan, bring with them, decades of experience in hiring, engaging and retaining PWD as well as running talent accelerators for them. Sumitomo Life, through their corporate initiative called TomoWork, has dedicated several of its staff members to guide the programme on a full-time basis alongside Singapore-based social enterprise, Hide & Seek.

TEP has been co-created by Special Educational Needs (SEN) support strategists from TP’s Student Support & Career Services department. The staff provided insightful learning support strategies for the participants and actively marketed the TEP to students with the other Polytechnics’ and ITE’s SEN networks.

The TEP, run entirely virtually from 13 September to 6 October 2021, seeks to ignite interest in different areas of work, while providing flexibility in schedule to facilitate learning. Students can select from up to four of the following tracks: Digital Marketing, Data Analytics, Sustainability and Talent Management. The programme objective is for participants to be able to align themselves with emerging professions, so that they can pivot their skillsets to secure job opportunities.

The highlights of the 4-week TEP programme include:

  • Accelerated Courses on Fundamentals: All tracks offer crash courses for complete beginners to the field. No matter the background or studies, any student can join and learn the foundations.
  • Skill-Development Session by Corporates: Leading companies in respective fields will deliver hands-on sessions on practical skills. Students can learn high-in-demand skills related to the track.
  • Career Talks by Industry Professionals: Students will hear from industry professionals who made use of their skills to build their careers.
  • Mentoring: Students have the opportunity to speak to at least two industry professionals on a personal or small group basis to gain career advice and insights.

Mr. Toru Shiomitsu, Managing Executive Officer of Sumitomo Life Insurance, said, “We are delighted to offer the second programme with Temasek Polytechnic and expand the programme to all PWD across polytechnics. We saw great outcomes from our first programme, and we are deepening our collaboration with Temasek Polytechnic to create an exceptional career explorer programme for the PWD community in Singapore.”

For TP, this partnership is in line with the core mission of Polytechnic and ITE Education of preparing our graduates to be ready for tomorrow’s global workforce. Commenting on this, Mr. Peter Lam, Principal & CEO of Temasek Polytechnic, said: “We are excited to once again collaborate with Sumitomo Life after the successful run of the digital talent accelerator programme earlier this year. Encouraged by the benefits of this programme, we decided to expand it to include PWD in the other polys and ITE. This revamped Talent Explorer Programme which is specially curated to allow participants to explore their interest in ‘jobs of the future’, will definitely widen the horizons of these students and allow them to ride the wave of digital transformation with confidence.”

This initiative also contributes towards building a more inclusive society by engaging multiple stakeholders from different sectors to join hands in supporting young talent development.

While LinkedIn offered an overview of high-demand sectors and jobs in Singapore, Bloomberg, bp, Cognizant, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, NTT DATA SINGAPORE, Santen, Sembcorp Industries, Singtel, Tableau, UNIQLO and VMware have provided skills training and mentoring sessions, career talks and insightful career advice to the participants.

About Temasek Polytechnic

Temasek Polytechnic logo

Established in 1990, TP is one of the leading institutions of higher learning in Singapore. Currently, it offers 36 full-time diploma courses in the areas of applied science, business, design, engineering, humanities & social sciences and informatics & IT. It also offers over 40 part-time courses, up to the advanced diploma level. TP students undergo a holistic learning system that combines hands-on experience, character education and relevant life skills, in an enriching learning environment. The polytechnic has also infused global realities into its programmes and developed a mindset on campus that embraces socio-cultural diversity. These ensure that TP graduates are ready for work or further studies, and to contribute meaningfully to the community. For more information, please visit here.

About Sumitomo Life Insurance

Sumitomo Life Logo

Sumitomo Life was established in 1907, and is one of Japan’s four largest insurance companies. Sumitomo Life sells individual, group life and specialized health policies as well as an annuity and administers pension plans in Japan. It is also actively engaged in overseas operations and maintains subsidiaries and/or representative offices in the United States, and Asia. Sumitomo Life is also a proud signatory of the Valuable 500, a global movement where the CEO pledge to put disability on the business leadership agenda. In Singapore, Sumitomo Life Insurance has invested in Aviva Singlife Holdings Pte. Ltd., which holds the Singapore Life Pte. Ltd. and Aviva Ltd legal entities. For more information, please visit here.