Calling the National University of Singapore’s (NUS) University Town a “strategic initiative” that will strengthen the educational experience of the entire student body at NUS, Mr Lee Kuan Yew acknowledged NUS alumni, well-wishers and friends of the University who have donated to the cause. He was speaking at an event hosted by NUS and the National University of Singapore Society (NUSS), Singapore’s largest graduate club. At the ceremony, Mr Lee was conferred Honorary Membership of NUSS. He also presented tokens of appreciation to the Founding Benefactors of University Town, who have contributed a total of S$40.1 million to University Town.
The Founding Benefactors include Ngee Ann Kongsi, The Silent Foundation Ltd, Wilmar International Pte Ltd and Keppel Corporation Ltd, as well as individuals like Chairman of NUS Board of Trustees Mr Wong Ngit Liong, Chairman and CEO of Ho Bee Group Mr Chua Thian Poh, Founder of Bayan Resources Dato’ Low Tuck Kwong and his daughter Elaine Low, Drs Della Lee and Lee Seng Gee from the Lee Foundation, CEO of Wilmar International Pte Ltd Mr Kuok Khoon Hong, COO of Wilmar International Pte Ltd Mr Martua Sitorus, Founder and Executive Chairman of Mayapada Group Dr Tahir, and Founder and Managing Director of Suntar International Pte Ltd Prof Lan Weiguang.
NUS’ University Town, which opens today, will offer small group learning in Residential Colleges and a multi-disciplinary academic programme which will encourage students to think critically about global issues.
Remarking that strong alumni support is necessary for the success and growth of any university, Mr Lee said, “I hope this culture of giving back to the alma mater will become well established. Your support will enable additional teaching staff to be recruited to run the small-group learning in the Colleges and provide scholarships and bursaries to deserving students who may otherwise miss out on this opportunity.”
Several of the Founding Benefactors of University Town are NUS alumni.
Mr Lee also spoke about the value of the social networks forged during university days and the bonds that are formed among students by the residential college experience. “I speak from personal experience,”
NUS Professor Wang Gungwu, in his citation for Mr Lee, commented on the role of universities, saying, “The modern university is an extraordinarily protean institution…. and its potential for producing thinkers, activists and leaders for any need or direction remains unique. having spent two years in Raffles College, the precursor to the NUS. I was forced to reside in college as I was a scholar and it made a difference to my life.”
NUS President Professor Tan Chorh Chuan offered guests, who included heads of companies and major benefactors to NUS and NUSS, a virtual tour of the University Town campus. He said, “University Town’s physical facilities are excellent. But it will be ‘the software’ and special programmes that will make the greatest impact on our students and community. In this regard, NUS is truly indebted to our donors. Together with government matching, your generous support will provide NUS with the resources to establish the academic programmes so crucial for the success of University Town.
For more information on making a gift to NUS, please call Ms Ho Yuen Kwan at 6516 5755 or email email@example.com