Paper qualifications not important [nonsense!] Paper qualifications not important is what the impression is when reading a recent news article. Quoting our education minister: “Skills would be sought after by employers in the new economy, and not paper qualifications“. However, a quick check shows that he comes from Raffles Institution and London School of Economics. These are 2 schools are immediately recognizable and have high prestige as well as ranking. Paper qualifications not important?! Yes indeed that may be true for general degrees such as those in arts or business. However, that definitely does not apply to professional careers. Whose practitioners belong to and follow rules set by a professional board. More importantly, the board have the power to allow or disallow the practitioners to continue practicing any time. For example, the medical doctors by the Singapore Medical Council, dentists by the Singapore Dental Council. Both of which comes under the Ministry of Health. Likewise lawyers by the Council – The Law Society of Singapore and comes under the Ministry of Law. In addition, teachers comes directly under the purview of the Ministry of Education just to name more obvious examples. Paper qualifications is important! In order to gain admissions into these fields, one cannot just have ‘skills’. They need to undergo a formal education as well as graduate with a professional degree before they can even be qualify for work in the respective field. Frequently, their remuneration is higher than average, in addition to more stable employment opportunities. Therefore, university programs training in these careers are also some of the most competitive. So raising up the point about skills is completely moot. Bottomline What the minters is trying to say is that one need to have skills as well as a university degree. And this is the most important combination what employers are looking for in potential employees. Not either one of them. And most definitely not just skills alone. I hope no one believes what his justification as to why there is a need to cap university admissions for locals unless he goes on to support the point by having the government take lead and bring a skillful politician without a degree qualification to prove that it’s more important.