For more than three years, S.E.A. Aquarium’s Marine Youth Ambassador programme has seen over 250 student volunteers experience what it is like to work at one of the world’s largest aquariums.
Designed for students aged 15-18, the selection process begins with a recommendation from their teacher, before an interview with the S.E.A. Aquarium Operations team. This gives them a taste of the job search process, and how to present themselves to potential hirers.
Leading these interviews is Jim Hudson, Senior Manager, S.E.A. Aquarium Operations.
“We look for that hidden spark in these students. Some of the best volunteers we’ve had were very shy at first. But through the programme, we have seen them emerge from their shell very quickly and blossom into confident, highly motivated young adults.”
Before their 5-10 days stint, the students will undergo a one-day orientation to learn about marine animals and aspects of guest engagement. They will then be posted to stations such as touch pool and the various habitats on a rotational basis.
Last week, four Secondary Three students from Ping Yi Secondary School doubled up as Marine Youth Ambassadors as part of their Education and Career Guidance (ECG) programme. ECG is an initiative by the Ministry of Education to introduce students to various career opportunities, and to plan for their future. They share their experience.
The touch pool is a great platform for these students to improve their guest engagement skills. The exhibits become the common topic of interest that bridges them and the guests as they build their confidence in public speaking.
——– Jim Hudson, Senior Manager, S.E.A. Aquarium Operations
Koh Lin Lynn, biology teacher at Ping Yi Secondary School shares her thoughts on the programme:
“This is a very authentic learning opportunity. Most students in the programme already have a strong interest in the tourism or aquaculture industry, so it is a great way for them to reaffirm their strengths and make informed choices when pursuing their higher education and future career.”
Toh Qiuyan, teacher and ECG coordinator at Ping Yi Secondary School adds:
“Marine Youth Ambassador is one of the few programmes in Singapore that offers such an immersive, hands-on experience for secondary school students, and to really put their skills to the test.”
For details on the Marine Youth Ambassador programme, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org