Help young people become productive citizens who are able to help themselves and others in the future. This desire prompted Dr George S.C. Wong to set up a Bursary at the NUS Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine (YLLSoM).
Dr Wong, a retired plastic surgeon, spent a year at NUS’ predecessor institution King Edward VII College of Medicine before pursuing his studies in Australia on the Colombo Plan Scholarship. He says, “I benefitted from the Scholarship and as a result I made good. I received a gift from society that helped me and I wanted to contribute and give others the opportunity to improve themselves. This is how one generation helps the next.”
Dr Wong believes that given the current global economic situation and increasing social inequalities, there is need for a new philosophy of life, which teaches people from a young age to give back to society – each according to his means. “Instead of looking to governments for help, individuals, who are able, should give back. This will make for a more harmonious society.” And since education empowers people and helps them be independent, a prized quality to Dr Wong, giving to education makes excellent sense.
Gu Hanzi, a Year Three YLLSoM student, who is receiving the George S. C. Wong Bursary, is sure to agree. She says, “The Bursary has helped me to be financially independent. I feel I am more in control of my life now.”
Hanzi aims to be a “competent and responsible member of society” and is already doing her bit to give back to society by participating in neighbourhood health screening programmes.
This is close to Dr Wong’s heart as he believes in the “multiplier effect”. He says, “I received a Scholarship and now I give towards bursaries. If the recipients go on to help others, imagine how society will benefit. I would like to inculcate this philosophy in people but ultimately giving must come from the heart.”
An active octogenarian, Dr Wong enjoys ballroom dancing, reading Chinese history and playing jazz piano. He is also a computer buff who builds computers from scratch. He says, “I feel grateful for what I have received and I want to give back and make society better.”
To know more about making a gift to NUS, please contact Ms Ho Yuen Kwan at 6516 5755 or email firstname.lastname@example.org