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What It Takes to Be an AI Apprentice

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Today, we welcome the fifth batch of apprentices into the AI Apprenticeship Programme (AIAP)™. Even as they embark on their journeys, getting used to the office they will call home for the next 9 months like many before them, AI Singapore has already started the application process for the sixth iteration of the award-winning programme. What does it take to be accepted into the programme? After running it for two years, we have a pretty good idea of the kind of candidates who do well.

To start off, the programme is one of deep-skilling rather than re-skilling. This means you come into the programme already equipped with some of the relevant skills, ready to work with us to build further capabilities.

We look for hidden gems and help polish them a bit. And then let them shine.

– Laurence Liew, director of Industry Innovation, AI Singapore

Being a relatively new specialisation, many have come into AI engineering from different backgrounds and disciplines. Despite that, there is a common core of knowledge which we consider to be essential and can be acquired by the motivated individual through self-study before they start AIAP™. We have enunciated this core knowledge in the AIAP Field Guide, now available in book form.

Click on the image to download

The guide lays out clearly the fields of knowledge the AIAP™ aspirant should be conversant with as well as suggested resources to acquire them within a 12-month period. Programme hopefuls are free to replace the learning platforms with their own preferences, especially for individuals who already have partial knowledge in some areas (e.g. Python coding, statistics). Make no mistake that to become an AI engineer is not a walk in the park. You have to be comfortable with both theory and practice.

Of course, having technical knowledge is not the only important aspect. There are many “softer” skills which help you do well. These include being able to articulate problems, work with different viewpoints as a team and the curiosity to keep up with developments in the field. Take a page from those who have gone before.

We hope that this field guide goes a long way towards accelerating the learning journey should you decide to apply for the apprenticeship programme!

The AIAP™ is the first TechSkills Accelerator Company-Led Training (TeSA-CLT) initiative in AI. This is a collaboration between AI Singapore and IMDA to develop a pipeline of AI professionals for the industry.

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