In tribute to the 90th birthday of Singapore’s Founding Prime Minister Mr Lee Kuan Yew this year, NUS and the Singapore University of Technology and Design have raised gifts amounting to more than S$100 million each for educational initiatives.
Speaking during the donor appreciation dinner on 3 September 2013 at the Istana, Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong thanked the donors for their generosity and the two universities for raising funds. The donations will be matched by the government.
Education has always been Mr Lee’s key priority, noted Prime Minister Lee. “Personally, he has been an ardent student learning new skills even into old age, wrestling with Microsoft Word and other challenges of the computer age,” he said.
Prime Minister Lee noted that Mr Lee had overseen heavy investments in Singapore’s education system and its people, to make them the best they can. “And those who have benefitted from this system have an obligation, a responsibility to contribute back to society and help others to do well,” stated Prime Minister Lee.
Part of the S$100 million gift raised by NUS will go towards supporting bursaries, scholarships and study awards, allowing students to pursue their courses regardless of their financial background. A Lee Kuan Yew Endowed Fund has been set up, offering bursaries for financially needy students. Financial assistance provided to such students in the University will increase as the fund grows over time.
The gifts will also advance the development and enhancement of programmes at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, University Town, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine and Yale-NUS College.
NUS President Professor Tan Chorh Chuan expressed his appreciation for the funds raised to date: “The NUS community and our generous donors are delighted and honoured to be able to mark Mr Lee Kuan Yew’s 90th birthday in such a meaningful way.”
“These bursaries and the programmes enabled by the generous gifts will help us to preserve and commemorate Mr Lee’s remarkable contributions towards education which have benefitted many generations of Singaporeans,” he added.
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