1. What distinguishes The SAF Scholarship from the other scholarships available today?

A military profession is not for everyone. For those who are bold enough to take the leap of faith, they can expect grooming and developmental opportunities at every level in the SAF. In particular, recipients of The SAF Scholarship will be given the opportunity to serve Singapore and Singaporeans beyond the SAF through secondment opportunity to other public sector agencies if they perform well.

As The SAF Scholarship is jointly offered by the Public Service Commission (PSC) and MINDEF/SAF, you will be equipped with a myriad of leadership and managerial skills, and systematically groomed to assume key appointments within and beyond the SAF.

2. When is the application window and what can I expect if I am shortlisted?

Applications for the 2021 scholarship cycle open on 13 July 2020, and close in mid-March 2021.You can submit your application for The SAF Scholarship via the PSC website at ( In your PSC Gateway application, under “Career and Course Preferences”, please indicate “Uniformed Services – Singapore Armed Forces” as your top career choice.

Specific to female applicants, you are strongly encouraged to concurrently apply for the SAF Merit Scholarship in order for MINDEF/SAF to assess your suitability and to facilitate your enlistment for Basic Military Training (BMT).

Shortlisted candidates have to undergo the PSC panel interview. The panel interview is usually held from January to May each year. Candidates who are found suitable by PSC would be offered The SAF Scholarship on a provisional basis and be referred to MINDEF/SAF for further assessment.

As we are looking for talent with the potential to assume key leadership positions in the SAF, we place emphasis on their military performance. As such, you must qualify for Officer Cadet School (OCS) based on your own merits as your performance during OCS will have a bearing on your suitability for the scholarship. The SAF Scholarship would be confirmed if you are found suitable by MINDEF/SAF during our selection board in May/June.

3. What does MINDEF/SAF look for in a candidate?

The selection board looks for candidates with leadership potential, good character, commitment to serve Singapore and Singaporeans, and a keen interest to pursue a challenging and fulfilling profession with MINDEF/SAF.

4. How much weight does military performance in Basic Military Training (BMT) and Officer Cadet School (OCS) carry in determining whether I will be offered The SAF Scholarship?

As we are looking for bright young talent to assume key leadership appointments in the SAF, you must perform well in BMT, and qualify for OCS. Failure to gain entry to OCS would be a veto criterion for the scholarship.

5. Are Permanent Residents (PRs) allowed to apply for The SAF Scholarship?

Applicants are required to be Singapore Citizens at point of application.

6. Are GCE ‘A’ level equivalent e.g. International Baccalaureate (IB) recognised?

Yes, MINDEF/SAF benchmarks the results of such equivalent qualifications against that of the GCE ‘A’ levels.

7. How long is the bond? Is the period of studies counted towards the fulfilment of the bond?

The bond is six years and will take immediate effect after you graduate and return to service. Consistent with other scholarship awarding agencies where bond is imposed, the period of studies is not counted towards the fulfilment of the bond.

8. What happens if I am not offered The SAF Scholarship in the end?

If you are not found suitable for The SAF Scholarship during MINDEF’s internal selection board, you may be considered for other PSC Scholarships, if offered by PSC. Depending on the circumstances, MINDEF/SAF may exercise the flexibility to offer other scholarships such as the SAF Merit Scholarship.UNIVERSITY STUDIES

9. If I have not applied to any university, will the SAF help me to secure a place?

You are expected to apply for universities of your choice as admission is dependent on individual merit. You should also arrange to sit for the necessary pre-admission tests such as the SAT, where necessary.

10. I have been offered a placement in a university, should I proceed to accept the offer notwithstanding that I have not been officially offered The SAF Scholarship?

You may request for an extension of the deadline on the basis that you are being considered for a scholarship and are pending an outcome. Many established universities are familiar with our scholarship selection process and are likely to consider an extension.

11. When can I leave for studies if I am awarded The SAF Scholarship?

You may disrupt for studies upon completion of the Service Term in Officer Cadet School (OCS). As a guide, you may depart for studies in August/September if you are proceeding to US universities, and end September if you are proceeding to UK universities. If you choose to pursue your studies in other countries, your disruption date would commensurate with the course commencement date.

12. Can I pursue a double major? What about a Master’s Degree immediately after my Honours Degree?

Yes, you are allowed to pursue a Master’s Degree in most disciplines (except Medicine, Dentistry and Architecture) if you meet the eligibility criteria and complete it within the stipulated study period of four years.

You can pursue a double major if you are able to complete your studies within the stipulated study period of four years.

13. Can I choose the university and course for my study?

You can choose the university and course of your study (with the exception of professional courses such as architecture, medicine, dentistry etc.). You may pursue a degree in Law. However, you will not be called to the Bar while serving in the SAF.

14. How will the SAF help me adapt after returning from my studies?

Currently, the SAF recalls our scholars during the summer vacation for attachments in SAF units as well as developmental programmes organised by PSC. Through this, you can keep updated with the developments in the SAF. Also, you will be assigned a mentor prior to graduation, who will be attached to you for several years upon your return from studies. You will be scheduled for route of advancement courses to prepare you to take up your respective appointments upon return.


15. Can I choose which Service (Army, Navy or Air Force) to join if offered The SAF Scholarship?

Yes, you may indicate which Service you would like to join. Your suitability for the respective Service will be based on your individual merit.

16. What is the job nature like in MINDEF/SAF? What valuable skills can I acquire?

As a The SAF Scholarship recipient, you will be put in appointments where you will be constantly challenged to apply your analytical skills and ground experience. Through various tours you will not only hone your skills as a leader, but also as a manager, a planner and a strategist. You will be equipped with valuable skill sets and strong leadership competencies to tackle myriad challenges such as organisational management, project management, competency development, people development, resource management, and incident management.

You can expect to contribute to long-term planning that determines MINDEF/SAF’s future development. You will also have the chance to represent MINDEF/SAF to work with officers from the other Ministries to formulate government policies at the national level. All in, the job nature is extremely challenging and offers a wide spectrum of variety.