MINDEF jobs you didn't know existed

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13 May 2024 | PEOPLE

MINDEF jobs you didn't know existed

From a military dog trainer to a physiotherapist deployed on-site with soldiers, these are DXOs who make a difference in the SAF.

// Story & videos by Thrina Tham / Photos by Kenneth Lin & Chai Sian Liang

Though they don't don a uniform, these Defence Executive Officers (DXOs) are out on the ground as much as the military counterparts they work with. They take on less-heard-of positions in the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF), from training military dogs and providing physio care to soldiers, to helping recruits integrate into military life.

Meet them here:

Ms Samantha Tan

Dog trainer

Ms Tan carrying out narcotics training with a sniffer dog and its handler at Mowbray Camp.

Always the outdoorsy type, Ms Tan, 28 was an adventure specialist with an outdoor adventure company before joining the SAF as a military dog trainer.

She's responsible for training up the canines into fully-operational fur soldiers – adept in their roles as sniffer or protection dogs.

As part of the SAF's Military Working Dog Unit, she also conducts assessments on operational dogs at various camps and bases, ensuring that they remain current in their role.

Mr Joseph Lim

Physiotherapist

Mr Lim assessing a 3 SIR soldier with knee pain.

Physiotherapy care for personnel has evolved over the years, said Mr Lim, who has been treating patients in the SAF for the past 10 years.

As part of the SAF's Centre of Excellence for Soldier Performance, physios don't just see patients but conduct research and trials to help reduce injuries. Patients also receive more immediate care now, instead of having to visit the physiotherapy centre.

Before joining the SAF, the 39-year-old worked in Australia for a year and in a public hospital back in Singapore for three.

He is currently deployed with the 3rd Battalion, Singapore Infantry Regiment as a physiotherapy-on-site with them throughout their training.

Mr Joseph Rozario & Mr Ronald Wee

Orientation Officers

Mr Rozario counsels recruits at the Basic Military Training Centre (BMTC) headquarters.
Mr Wee, who is attached to BMTC School 1, interacting with his recruits at the cookhouse.

They help recruits adjust to military life, and counsel them on issues they face whether in national service or in their personal life.

Mr Rozario and Mr Wee, both 66, were former regulars, helping them to relate to what the recruits are going through in the Army.

Mr Rozario always had a passion for counselling. While serving as an Army major, he volunteered with Singapore Aftercare Association – helping ex-offenders reintegrate into society – and as a Volunteer Probation Officer with the Ministry of Social & Family Development.

Meanwhile, former Chief Fitness Warrant, Mr Wee often joins his recruits for their runs and exercises, helping to allay their apprehensions about physical training.

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