There is always room for learning, research, discovery and innovation. In the spirit of lifelong learning, the Benefactor Campus Experience 2018 organized by the NUS Development Office was held over two days from 24 to 25 August 2018. From masterclasses and workshops to campus tours, 123 donors and guests were treated to explorations into current issues and trends, cutting edge research, and innovative solutions.
NUS’ leading professors delved into topics such as “Digital Transformation in Manufacturing and Distribution”, “Green Sustainability and Wellness”, “Smart Business Transformation”, “Text Analytics: Understanding Insights from Speeches”, “The Decline of American Exceptionalism?”, and “数据科学的前世今生：从孙子到马云”, which was conducted in Mandarin.
Beyond the classroom, donors were also given in-depth campus tours of the latest developments at the University. At the Faculty of Dentistry, donors were able to get some hands-on experience working with inventive training simulators and getting a sneak preview of the new National University Centre for Oral Health, set to be open in 2019. At NUS Engineering, participants discovered how real-world problems were solved through innovation and design, and interacted with world-class innovations.
Meanwhile, at the NUS Innovation 4.0 Building, where the latest research and innovation on automation and artificial intelligence (AI) are taking place – guests learned how AI competencies were upgraded or transformed, and were served coffee from an automated robotic coffee maker named, Ella. Over at the KEIO-NUS Cute Center, benefactors had a taste of the future through prototypes of groundbreaking interactive digital media – the centre’s speciality – such as virtual reality (VR) experiences that included thermal and air-flow sensations.
With a multitude of prototypes that may be commercialised, naturally, the next stage of development may be learned at The Hangar by NUS Enterprise, the entrepreneurial arm of NUS. Donors explored the ways start-ups navigate the entrepreneurial landscape and got to know of the suite of incubator and accelerator programmes at The Hangar. The final campus tour option was the NUS School of Design and Environment, where benefactors had a sneak peek at the upcoming NUS SDE Net Zero Energy Building, the latest eco-friendly building that will be home to research laboratories and design studios set to open in early 2019.
This year’s Benefactor Campus Experience concluded with a range of cultural showcases such as a Japanese Tea Ceremony and Incense Workshop, an Interactive Musical Performance titled, Air, and an exclusive preview of NUS alumna Yeo Shih Yun’s exhibition of paintings with Chinese ink, with an attendant workshop on creating contemporary abstract Chinese ink paintings. Donors were treated to a wine appreciation and canapés reception as well as the chance to dine and catch up with NUS President, Professor Tan Eng Chye, on the latest developments and the growing vision of the University.