Jonathan Liautrakul has big dreams. The student at the National University of Singapore’s (NUS) Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) hopes to be a journalist at Singapore Press Holdings or a researcher in military studies. However, Jonathan’s own story seemed uncertain… until he received the Chancellor’s Bursary.
The Chancellor’s Bursary was set up by anonymous donor who was planning a donation to the President’s Challenge. Former President S R Nathan, who was the Chancellor of NUS at that time, encouraged the donor to set up a Bursary instead, to help University students in financial difficulty. Jonathan is one of five students in the first batch of recipients in AY 2011/2012.
Jonathan’s father is a retiree. His mother is a homemaker and a cancer survivor. Financing a university education is no easy task for the family.
Jonathan says, “The Bursary has given me the opportunity not just to experience University but also to make the most of it.”
Jonathan currently resides at NUS University Town (UTown), Singapore’s first residential college experience. He is a resident of Cinnamon College – home of the University Scholars Programme (USP), an interdisciplinary academic programme. The Literature Major is the editor of PRISM, a USP publication that publishes undergraduate research papers. He is also aiming to graduate with Honours.
He says, “If not for the Bursary, I would never have dreamed of staying at UTown or taking the four-year Honours route. I would have done a basic degree and graduated quickly so I could find a job and support my family.”
Jonathan adds, “Staying in the Residential College has proven to be an unforgettable experience with closer connections forged with staff and students, new friends made and life lessons learnt.”
With his financial worries at bay, Jonathan hopes to write the dream ending to his own story. “I believe that it is better to give than to receive. Given the opportunity, I hope to give tuition to less privileged students or help out at my Faculty as a Research Assistant,” he says.
For more information on making a gift to NUS, contact Ms Ho Yuen Kwan at (+65) 6516 5755 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.