Sunday 6 March 2011

What next after A levels? Show you the money!

So you just got your A-level results on Friday.

Now what are you going to do with the rest of your life? Are you going to do what your parents want you to do?

Or will you follow your own dreams instead and stomp on the hearts of the people who raised you, fed you, clothed you and paid for your broadband connection?

What is a 19-year-old to do?

To help you decide, perhaps it would be pertinent to point out that inflation in Singapore hit a two-year high in January. Which is to say it’s all about the Benjamins - or in our case, it’s all about the Yusof Ishaks.

Tertiary education is not cheap, so you have to consider how much money you can make in the field you want to go into. Thanks to certain recent news reports, we now know how much certain individuals in certain professions earn.

Let’s say you want to be a surgeon. Good choice. Your parents would be very happy (if they can afford it).

Dr Susan Lim, a general surgeon in private practice, charged a member of Brunei’s royal family $26 million (including GST) for five months of service.

You know how hard it is for a regular person to make that kind of money? It’s like being the sole winner of Hongbao Toto Draw two and a half men - I mean 'times'. That's how hard.

Dr Lim is now fighting to stop the Singapore Medical Council from appointing a second disciplinary committee to investigate the accusation that she overcharged her patient.

During the hearing, another doctor testified that the non-procedural fees of a senior surgeon should range from $10,000 to $15,000 a day. Procedural fees should range from $20,000 to $40,000.

All of which sounds very lucrative - unless you’re Daniel Ong.

Last month, The New Paper reported that the former Radio 913 deejay can make up to $25,000 per event as an emcee - and he didn’t even have to go to medical school.

Yes, Ong can earn in a single night what Raddy Avramovic, coach of Singapore football team, makes in an entire month in salary.

But before you apply for deejay college, be aware that in another court case, it was revealed that deejay-host-actor Marcus Chin was paid only $23,620 for the entire year of 2008 and $33,391 for the entire year of 2009 by J Team Productions.

So not everyone can be Daniel Ong and marry a former Miss Singapore.

And speaking of football, not everyone can be national players Shahril Ishak and Baihakki Khaizan who are each getting a two-year US$300,000 contract to play in Indonesia.

But if you think you have the chops to be the next Fandi Ahmad (who earned $18,500 a month in 1995 as a player), good news!

The Fandi Ahmad Academy is opening on Saturday.

Not sure how many A levels you need to get in though.

Last month, The New Paper also reported that a managing director, who had been earning more than $10,000 a month, quit his job to stay home and look after his kids.

Being a full-time parent pays nothing, but there may be rewards other than monetary.

And you don't need any A levels at all.

So how many years of your life have you wasted?

Be warned though, one of the pitfalls of being a parent is that your kids may become full-time parents.

Worst comes to worst, you can become a sitcom star.

- Published in The New Paper, 6 March 2011