8 reasons why you should come to Computing

Note: This list represents what my friends and I think of Computing. If you vehemently disagree, do share your reasons with me! (:

It’s been over a week since the release of the A level results, so first off, congrats on surviving your A’s! Many of you young people are now probably wondering which university/faculty/major you should apply for. 4 words for you: NUS School of Computing! Before you say me bias and close this window, let me tell you why.

SoCSee how pretty our faculty looks? :D
Photo credit: NUS School of Computing’s FB page

In no particular order, my narrowed down list:

1. We have AWESOME profs and staff

I’ve taken modules from other faculties, and I dare say Computing has the nicest profs and staff in the whole of NUS. They – most of them – really care for you and will often go out of their way to help you. Our career advisor Desmond is a great example (the poor guy is overworking himself for the sake of us students ><), and we’ve quite a few profs on the NUS Teaching Honour Roll. All you need to do is make that little bit of extra effort to chat with them, and you'll be friends in no time. It’s especially useful if you need your profs to write a recommendation for you haha. Oh, and did I mention that in Computing, it's normal to add your profs on Facebook? Reading their posts/comments never fails to make me smile haha and yes, they complain/share retarded stuff just as much as us students! Totally love them :D

Funny FB postMy profs post stuff like this EVERYDAY. Names blanked out for privacy.
Photo credits: Screenshot from FB

2. We’re 1st in asia and 9th in the world

A friend of mine, who was an exchange student, once told me, “Only the best students in America get to come to Computing for their student exchange.” I was just as surprised as you probably are now, but it goes to show how internationally recognised we are. You’ll definitely be able to leverage on the school’s reputation and network, gaining access to top tier universities (180 partners in 27 countries!) via programmes like our Student Exchange Programme. What’s more, just take a look at our own career fair (the NUS one is pretty useless for us) and you’ll see lots of big names like Facebook and Google who are eager to hire Computing students/grads!

QS University rankingsQS World University Rankings by Subject 2014 – Computer Science & Information Systems.
Photo credits: Screenshot from the Top Universities website.

3. We’re a small faculty with a big culture

Computing is small enough to feel almost family-ish, and honestly, I feel even more at home there than I do in Eusoff Hall (and I do like Eusoff, or I wouldn’t have stayed for 3 years). You’ll make friends who’ll stick with you through thick and thin, and who knows, maybe you’ll meet your soul mate here too ;) Instead of a student council, we have a Management Committee which organises stuff ranging from the more academic mock exams to the welfare driven exam refreshments corner to the crazy fun R&R Night where you get to play stuff like Kinect, sing K, LAN games (lanning in the labs on big screen coms over super fast internet is AWESOME), etc. We also have a hacker culture of sorts, led by our very own student group NUS Hackers. Look forward to events like Friday Hacks (FREE PIZZA YAY!), workshops (open to public; you’ll be surprised at the number of old people non NUS adults who attend), and Hackathons (the 2013 grand prize was a weeklong all expenses paid trip to Silicon Valley!!).

SoC @ The RinkSoC @ The Rink. Mass FREE ice skating outing for the incoming freshies :D
Photo credits: School of Computing Freshmen Social Camp 2013

4. There’s a HUGE demand for IT professionals

I once had the honour of being invited to the SCS Planning Advance, and I still remember one of their ExCo members mentioning how the polys in Singapore were asked to lower the cut off points for their IT related diplomas. He, a distinguished figure in the Singapore IT industry, said it was because we have nowhere near enough IT professionals to keep up with the demand. While I don’t agree with this, by the laws of demand and supply, this means we get relatively higher salaries as compared to our friends from other faculties. This is especially so if you’re a computer science major doing something like software engineering (which happens to be the no. 1 job in the US, where the demand is even crazier). In fact, our CS grads’ pays are only behind the doctors, lawyers and dentists. And that’s why we’re in the same hall as them for the 2014 NUS Open Day (more details at the end of this post!) ;)

GES 2013GES 2013 results on salaries of NUS grads by degree.
Photo credits: Channel News Asia’s Facebook page

5. You won’t get judged if you don’t dress up for class

The feeling of being judged or getting incredulous looks based on what you wear sucks. So all you lazy people out there, this is for you. Ever felt like throwing on whatever and coming to school? Or maybe you just don’t see the point of dressing up/putting on makeup everyday when you’re in school to study, not attract guys/girls. Good news! Unlike some other faculties which I shall not name, you’ll feel right at home in shorts, *free school* T-shirts and slippers here in Computing. In fact, you may even see your profs dressed down when they’re (hiding in their offices and) not teaching. Why? Because, as a good friend of mine put it, dressing up tends to decrease our productivity. Haha on the other hand, if you feel like dressing up, nobody’s stopping you! Just know that you won’t get judged on your lazy days (:

Spot the number of free/school T-sirtsSpot the number of free/school T-shirts. This was a Saturday workshop so we were even more dressed down than usual.
Photo credits: Benjamin from Speaker’s Flare

6. We have lots of fun modules

I really enjoy what I’m learning in Computing even though it’s not always easy. No, it’s NOT all about programming (but of course, you’ll need to know the basics). Don’t enjoy programming or you just suck at it? Then take modules which don’t require/are are light on programming. Ditto for whatever other topics you can think of. We have over 130 undergrad mods to choose from – yes, I went to count them, so say thank you – including Interaction Design, Computer Graphics, Game Development, Digital Special Effects, E-business Essentials, Digital and New Media Marketing, Social Media Network Analysis. You can even take postgrad mods if you want and have them count towards your requirements. As an added bonus, many of our modules aren’t under the dreaded bell curve system :D

Our CS3343: Oscar award winning video from my all time favourite mod Digital Media Production :D

7. We have so many opportunities at our fingertips

Did you know that a computing degree is considered an “All Access” pass to all industries? Think about it for a moment and you’ll realise that there isn’t a single industry which can survive without IT in this Age of Computing. The school recognises this and organises a myriad of talks, seminars and workshops by industry players to give us the exposure we need. There are exclusive all women events for all you girls who join too, like our own Women’s Networking Session, as well as invitations to industry events like the Women Techmakers: Google Singapore event last night (I was totally starstruck by the big names there!). We have many internship opportunities as well, including international ones at companies like Palantir who are willing to fly you over just for interviews, and of course, pay really really well!

Intern pay
Glassdoor’s list of highest paying US companies for interns. Notice how almost all of them are tech companies.
Photo credits: Mashable

8. Our entire faculty is air conditioned

(Except for the first floor of COM2, but hey, that place is overrun by Biz students since their LT16 and LT17 are there, so we rarely hang out there anyway)

Arguably one of the most important reasons given Singapore’s eternal summer (and the current haze!). Students from other faculties (especially our neighbours) coming over to mug in the cool environment (no pun intended haha) is a common sight. Won’t they take up our studying space then? No worries, there are many rooms in Computing which are activated by your matric card — so only we have access to them :D Good if you feel like camping overnight in school too (trust me, it’s more fun than it sounds!). Also, according to Eugene, aircon = more events held here = FREE FOOD (it’s true)! Hahaha just remember to bring along a jacket in case you’re not used to the cold. Or buy the SoC jacket if the Management Comm sells it again next year :D

SoC jacket
Last last year’s SoC jacket which I stole borrowed from Eugene to take a picture of.
Photo has been Auto Awesomed on G+.

Still need more convincing? Then head down to the Computing booth at the NUS Open Day 2014 this Saturday and I’ll convince you in person ;) No bigger than life poster of me this year, cause we think my friend Jacky (Mr NUS 2011) will do a better job at attracting girls to our booth HAHA (sorry Jacky :P). We both appear many times in the brochure though, so remember to grab that ;)

NUS Open Day 2014
Computing booth, Hall 3
Stephen Riady Centre, Level 1
University Town
15 March, Saturday, 9am-6pm

NUS Open Day mapNUS Open Day map. The top 4 faculties in NUS are all together for once! :D
Photo credits: original image from NUS Open Day website, edits by me.

There’ll also be faculty talks by a couple of our profs and students. Unfortunately, I won’t be speaking this year ): But go for them anyway haha.

Speak the Language
Dance Atelier 2
Stephen Riady Centre, Level 3
9am, 11am, 3pm, 5pm

We have an LG G Flex phone to give away too!

We’ll also be giving away a brand new LG G Flex D958 phone to one lucky person who visits us on Open Day! Check out the details below:

LG G Flex giveawayLG G Flex giveaway! More details on our Facebook page.

Know anybody who hasn’t decided where to apply to yet? Haha drag them along because the more the merrier! I’ll see you guys on Saturday! :D

♥ sarrie


12 thoughts on “8 reasons why you should come to Computing

  1. Pingback: NUS ppl lip lai - Part 5 - Page 582 - www.hardwarezone.com.sg

  2. Disagree with Point 6. Your mods involve programming if you are a CS student! (Especially if you are in SoC for that high salary)

    Well, technically for CS it’s either programming or proofs. Although I don’t think most people feel that the proofs are easier.


    • Hey Jan, thanks for your opinion! I completely agree that a lot of your CS mods involve programming, especially if you want to be a software engineer — like CS3201 ;)

      Anyway, I wrote “take modules which don’t require/are are light on programming” based on my own experience (: Personally, my programming skills aren’t that strong and I’m currently trying to pull my CAP up, so I’m taking modules which are lighter on programming. My CAP is actually surprisingly good for a CM (now a spec in CS) kid who sucks at programming. For example, this sem I’m taking:
      – my FYP (HCI based and has relatively lesser programming than other FYPs)
      – Digital Special Effects (no programming)
      – User Interface Development (some programming)
      – Media Tech Project II (I’m the designer/tester in my group, so some programming)
      – 2 arts mods which have 0 programming

      As for proofs, I haven’t taken any mods which need them except for CS1231 and CS2102. Students in the IS (instead of CS) dept have even fewer modules which require programming. So really, I think we have a lot of freedom to choose what we want to specialise in, and hence mods which are heavy/light on programming/proofs (:

      Of course, that being said, having a strong technical foundation (in terms of programming or theory or whatever you decide to specialise in) is still very important! (:


    • Hey Ben, glad to know that my post is fulfilling its objective! Haha I’m sure FASS will be fun as well, and it’s just beside Computing so you can always drop by to enjoy the aircon ;) Oh and do sign up for your faculty’s Social Camp/Orientation Week/Rag and Flag, as once school starts proper, it’ll be much harder to make friends. I’m sure you don’t want to take modules alone/have no seniors to turn to for advice right? All the best! (:


  3. Pingback: [Ramblings] Reasons to come to SoC | Quarbby

  4. Will they brush up all the programming concepts of C, C++ and others before entering into the first year? Is it necessary to have the programming requisites? What should be the knowledge level of the students before they enter into the school of computing?


    • SoC does conduct refresher and intro to programming workshops a couple of weeks before school starts — in fact, I think they’re happening now. Not sure which language they’re using for the courses, but I would guess C or Java. The good thing about the school is that they assume all students come in with zero programming knowledge (and this is true for a majority of students). That’s what the foundation modules — programming methodology, data structures and algorithms, etc. — are for. If you’re already familiar with programming, you can choose to be exempted from some of the foundation mods, but you’ll have to check with the school for the procedure to do this as it probably has changed already.

      Hope this answers your questions! (:


  5. As a prospective student I have a few questions-

    What are the admission requirements/selection criteria?
    What are the job opportunities after graduation like especially for international students(I am from India)?

    Thanks in advance


  6. As a prospective Masters student, I have a few questions-

    What are the admission requirements/selection criteria?
    What are the kind of job opportunities after graduation for international students(I am from India)?

    Thanks in advance.


  7. Pingback: The awesome profs of NUS Computing – A collection of short stories | Sarrie's

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