Tang Hui Qi is commited towards a sustainable and greener Singapore.
Tell us about the nature of your work at National Environment Agency.
I oversee the monitoring of our air quality and ensuring that the information is available at all times and disseminated to the public in a timely manner. Attending to public and media queries on air quality is also an important aspect of my work. Besides the routine work, I also undertake projects on air quality to explore ways to improve and enhance existing air quality monitoring network and capabilities. To facilitate the sharing of knowledge, I conduct lectures to both NEA officers and the public about the air monitoring network and programmes that are in place in Singapore.
How is the working culture of your department and the challenges of your work?
What struck me most when I joined NEA were the diverse issues and the challenges NEA has to deal with on a daily basis. Some of the issues, for example, cover public hygiene and cleanliness standards, the prevention and control of vector-borne diseases, solid waste management, radiation protection and nuclear safety, pollution control, weather forecast and more.
On the work culture front, I must say I am privileged to work alongside colleagues who are good team players. They are not only caring but also willing to help one another to resolve challenges faced in our line of work. We have also a pool of senior officers who are willing to share their experiences with us all the time. As a young and new officer in NEA, I found the working environment to be nurturing and there are also plenty of opportunities for career and personal development within the agency.
How have you been able to use what you learned in uni for your job?
I graduated from NTU majoring in Chemistry and Biological Chemistry. As a chemistry graduate, I have acquired knowledge in both the theoretical and practical aspects of sciences in university. But more importantly, the rigorous curriculum that I had undergone during my undergraduate years have taught me how to think critically and honed my problem-solving skills. Through group projects, I have also acquired teamwork and better communication skills. These skills prove to be important assets as most employers value these qualities in their officers. My role as a scientific officer requires me to apply some domain knowledge acquired from my field of study to my work.
What gives you the most job satisfaction?
Although work can be demanding at times, it is always heartening to know that every new programme which is implemented can contribute to Singapore’s vision of a sustainable development and a quality living environment for both the present and future generations. The greatest satisfaction comes when you know that every little effort put in goes a long way towards achieving a cleaner and greener environment for Singapore.
What kinds of career and personal developmental opportunities does NEA provide its officers?
NEA offers a fulfilling and challenging career for its officers. It provides its officers with the opportunity to do more for our environment.
NEA officers also enjoy opportunities to represent Singapore in overseas conferences and seminars. This exposure gives officers a chance to learn and exchange ideas with our international counterparts. They also serve as a good platform for officers to establish their networks globally.
NEA also has in place a well-established career development framework to maximise an individual’s potential. This includes job rotation for officers to explore their areas of interest within the organisation. NEA also provides a wide range of training programmes and support to help officers improve their skills, knowledge and capabilities. In addition, NEA offers a wide range of scholarships in both local and overseas universities for officers who are keen to further their studies in the environmental field.
What are your interests? How do you balance it with working life?
I enjoy interacting with people. I love hanging out with my good friends, my family members or colleagues after work or on weekends. With regard to work-life balance, I must say that NEA has always promoted and encouraged good work-life balance for all staff. There are also good bonding opportunities with colleagues during the festive seasons, sports carnivals or family events for all to enjoy.
What qualities are essential to have if a student is interested in the scholarship?
In my opinion, individuals who care and love the environment would be suitable to apply for the NEW Scholarship. It is also critical for applicants to be innovative and also to share the same vision as NEA.
Attained: BSc in Chemistry
and Biological Chemistry
Now: Scientific Officer, Pollution