career transitioner/ restarter
Worldwide Public Sector Programme Manager, AWS
(In her 40's)
Her story (as shared by her nominator)
Jacqueline was Vice-Principal of an Autonomous School for three years. Prior to that, she was Head of Department (English Language & Literature) in another Autonomous School for five years. During her teaching career, she found herself engrossed with all the techie aspects of her role; tapping on technology to aid students in their learning and prepare them for the future workplace.
A few years ago, Jacqueline knew it’s time to move on professionally, she decided to take the plunge and actively sought out a new career in tech. She found a role with AWS Educate team, which allowed Jacqueline to blend her prior education experience and new tech/business knowledge - so she can continue to support education in a different way.
Leaving teaching was a tough personal decision for Jacqueline, her career with MOE has been in an upward trajectory and she was passionate about education. It took a lot for her to leave a senior position and make the career change for tech - something she believes in but it was a new uncharted territory - all while balancing her duo role has a working mom.
In her words:
My greatest achievement would have been to discover that I am actually stronger - and can continue to be even stronger - that I had expected when I was younger.
Biggest challenge thus far
I gave birth to a micro-premature baby in 2020 and after 58 days, she passed away in NICU. I would say that episode would have been my greatest challenge - dealing with a multitude of things such as not giving up hope on my baby's condition, recovering from my C-section, coping with 3 other kids, my eldest's PSLE prep, financial uncertainty due to mounting medical bills etc. I am proud to say that our family has tried to normalise our lives after Baby Joan's passing, much thanks to a lot of support from the good people around us.
what judges say
Even though her career pivot was not drastic, overcoming significant personal challenges to still draw strength and push ahead - commendable!