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30 years later, when your kids are working on their thesis in NUS Business School, maybe they will see this in one of those dusty books in the Thesis Library. 



First and foremost, I would like to offer my sincerest gratitude to my supervisor, Dr xxx, who supported me throughout my thesis with her invaluable advice, patience and knowledge whilst allowing me the room for development in this tough journey. This thesis would not be made possible without her constant guidance and advice.

I would also like to thank both Professor xxx and Dr xxx for their precious guidance and suggestions throughout this study. I would also like to extend my appreciation to Ms. xxx, Ms. xxx, and Ms. xxx who arranged and prepared for the subject pools.

I would also like to express my deep appreciation to my parents for their unwavering love and support. I also wish to thank my sister, Yirene Tan for her constant encouragement, understanding and prayers. I must also thank my boyfriend, Jason Ng for his continuous thoughtfulness, patience and sacrifices made during this study. I would also like to show my appreciation to all my friends in NUS Business School for their assistance and encouragement and brothers and sisters in S-Word Evangelical Free Church for their prayers.

Last but not least, I would like to thank God for His constant guidance, grace and mercy throughout my life. His guidance and presence made those difficult times more bearable. Thank You Lord, for in You all things are possible!


Tan Si Lin Serene


“Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know”  Jeremiah 33:3 (NIV)


I can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel.

6 April 2009, Monday

Thesis submission date.

I asked my Prof for advice. And she said.


Our mama told us we can secure a good job after obtaining our degree…

– Not true in our current context. Graduates were not spared either. 

Some old news we kind of already know after meeting friends who graduated last semester at career fairs. They too had the same motive – to secure a job. Now, all they want is a job. Not a career. Depressing.

Grads among worst hit as jobless rate increases By Aaron Low

GRADUATES are hurting the most among the growing pool of jobless Singapore residents battered by the economic crisis. The number of out-of-work degree holders more than doubled last year to 14,800 [THIS NUMBER HAS NOT TAKE US INTO ACCOUNT] in December, from 6,200 a year earlier.

They joined an expanding group of unemployed residents – comprising Singaporeans and permanent residents – whose numbers rose from 56,100 in September to 69,900 in December last year.

– The Straits Times, Mar 17, 2009

Useful information to make an educated decision.

Not going to comment on this information. But I thought it will be useful for students enrolling into the various  business school (among the 3 public universities) in Singapore come June 2009, to make an educated decision. But of course, ranking and reputation are only some factors among others that you will need to consider. 

But I am a marketer, what can I say, I am a brand whore, that’s because a brand signifies an expected quality that the organization will/can deliver.



I prayed long and hard last night that I will have a happy and smooth sailing day today. My motivation behind this prayer? A meeting with my thesis Prof and you know how stressful it can get. She texted me to postpone our meeting at six.fortyfour am.

In the end. I spent my day with my boy who just came back and bought me Vogue and Glamour.

A very blissful day. Prayer answered.

Now. I certainly don’t look forward to my scheduled meeting with my Prof.  

You meet weird people everywhere.

One participant. Answered 12 pages of questions about his attitudes, feelings, and opinions towards an ad. Placed positive ratings, said the ad was interesting but was a little exaggerating. But when asked to write down anything that he can remember about the ad.

He wrote…

 Nothing. What is freaking wrong with these people.

Dear Readers (just YOU, Ian),

I hereby apologize for the lack of (interesting) post in recent days/weeks/months as the chief editor/ random-shit writer of this lonely blog is too swarmed up with work. The lack of interesting events in her life doesn’t help.

So do be patient. You will probably need to wait for a few more months (2 to be exact) for the resurrection of this blog after she is released from her ill-fated lifestyle (caused by the unspeakable devil of t***s).

Chief editor / random-shit writer of somethingboutrenes

A Hectic Week and it ain’t over.

Some of my readers may be wondering why the lack of post these few days.

I’ll let you take a peek of my schedule and you’ll understand.


First lesson in Labour Law. I’m glad I took it.

Open book. (checked)

Interesting and useful (checked)

S/U-able (checked)

Interesting classmates. (Oh)

Year 1 and 2 ask way too many questions because 20 percent class participation is too high a stake to not speak. For the first time in a class, I barely speak less than 10 words in 3 hours.


Assessment Centre (almost full day). We were asked to prepare a 5 minutes presentation on a given topic a week ahead. Played some ball passing game. Had a group discussion.

But what surprised me most?

“How do you sell a radio to the deaf? Answer in 1 minute”

Don’t ask me how I fared. Cause I was shocked and my brain blanked out momentarily (4.17 seconds to be exact).


Morning: Trying to convince a dude from MOE that my secondary school’s alumni group is operating effectively, systematically and according to the school’s values. DUH.

Afternoon: Interview with “The Company that never sleeps” ’s  HR director.

One of the toughest interviews that I’ve ever been to and it lasted almost 1.5 hrs.

Try answering.

(1)   What’s the size of our economy? How much (in percentage) did manufacturing / import / export contribute to our economy?

(2)   What’s the political system / voting system like in Canada? What about in the United States?

(3)   What would you do if you are the Prime Minister? (answered) Ok, what else? (answered some more). Hmm. Anything else?

Conclusion: I need to read more and remember what I read.


A meeting with my thesis professor. Oh. Thesis. It was never good to start with.

Before I met her, she said. “Come prepared.”

When I met her, she said. “I thought I told you to come prepared.”

I need a huge brain; otherwise, I’ll need huge hands with a strong arm and a supernatural page flipping capability.

I need to be like Harry. Sponge-like Harry.


HAH. Just when you think it’s all over…


 Sharing with my juniors from NP on how my school rocks!


Briefing with the company “with a clam-like logo” for their full day assessment centre


Full day assessment centre


Interviewing with “clam-like logo” ’s competitor.


And on a daily basis, my thesis is haunting me. 

(Now, I am not supposed to blog for the upcoming week. Don’t ask why.)

Interview Tips: Dress to Impress

A little birdie forwarded an email to me this afternoon. LOL. 

Hi xxx,

Happy New Year.

Was just having a chat with little birdie (who joined us at the end of last year) and we both agreed that xxx business students going for career interviews tend to dress too conservatively and look alike (you don’t want to be candidate number 1034 or was it 1043?). They should have a bit more colour in their dressing. The standard outfit of a white blouse/shirt with a blue/black suit may be safe but borders on the verge of being boring (oh no no no, you don’t want to bore your interviewer with what you wear before what you say). A dash of yellow, pink, beige shirt/blouse in a dark suit may have a greater impact.

Just our opinions.

In any case, we thought of dropping by to have lunch with you in the next few weeks to catch up and also discuss the possible implementation of an internship programme with xxx company.


 Note: Little birdie, maybe you should have a series / posting to educate the rest of my readers on how to dress to impress. 

Was clearing shits in my room and found…


The number of tags denotes the number of networking sessions that I’ve attended in year 2008.

Sigh. Job hunting sucks.

Results Checking

This year result-checking is much more exciting! And that’s because I get to legitimately check my sister’s results while she is suffering in Myanmar for the greater good

Her results? OMG. I think we’ve got weird-exotic blood running in our veins.

Note: Dear Lord, please watch over my sister’s safety and health while she is away. Amen.

The Door leading to Narnia

During one of my friend’s adventurous exploration, they found a door in business school to Narnia. A mysterious land filled with wonder…


The door in disguise of a stairway. One would expect this door to lead to a dark flight of stairs up the building just like any other flight of stairs.




When the door is opened, you are in Narnia. The door leads you to a land with stone bricks walls and stones tablets looking like the graves from the 18th Century.

Wow… Narnia…[*slap my legs]

Stupid Narnia. It should be called Narnia the Feasting Ground for the Mozzies.

At this very place within 10 minutes, my legs were filled with 7 mosquito bites. What a feast, a blood buffet!

At this very mysterious land, I was also introduced to an interesting plant, the CB leaves.


CB leaves, where CB is an acronym for a female genital organ, are commonly found in the forests where our nation’s young hot-bloodied men train during their national service. The name of this leaves was derived from the 0.00001% resemblances of the leaves coupled with the wild imaginations of our young men with raging hormones.

Sigh. What are we doing to our future leaders of our society?

Green Alert circular excerpts

Recently, our school has being very active with a recycling project in campus and with that being my pet interest I did not delete those mails without reading them. The follow up inspection results were hilarious.

Excerpts from our school circular,

In general, there is an improvement in recycling activities on campus as evident through the increase in the correct types of recyclables in every recycling bins. However, it is observed that people have a tendency to throw plastic bottles into the ‘yellow’ recycling bins meant for aluminum cans.

4. Bins in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences have the highest level of segregated wastes.


5. Recycling bins in the Faculty of Engineering have the highest level of contamination. These bins contain wastes that cannot be recycled or recyclable wastes were thrown into the wrong bins. For example, Styrofoam food containers in “Paper” bin, paper cups in “Plastic” bins and “Can” bins.


(1) Students from the faculty of engineering can’t differentiate the materials of the wastes. Styrofoam is not paper, it is not even biodegradable!
(2) Students from the faculty of engineering can’t read. Plastic, Paper, Cans.
(3) These students don’t give a damn.

Sigh. Life is not just about algorithms, numbers and machines.

Emergency Warning

Thesis is now declared as a sensitive topic to be discussed in public. Tensions rising among thesis students and violence outbreak may be seen.