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Double celebration for NTU as its Class of 1985 marks 30 years, and is ranked 6th globally in Engineering

Published on: 18-Sep-2015

To mark three decades since they graduated as the pioneering batch of the former Nanyang Technological Institute (NTI) – the forerunner to present day Nanyang Technological University (NTU) – the Class of 1985 held their 30th Anniversary Reunion dinner at the Singapore Marriott Tang Plaza this evening (18 Sept 2015).

Also worthy of celebration is this week’s announcement that NTU is now ranked 6th globally in Engineering – a jump of three places – in the latest Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings 2015. Overall, NTU is also ranked 13th in the world, a jump of 26 places from last year, and is now among Asia’s top two universities.

Attending the event as its Guest-of-Honour was Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, as well as NTU Provost, Professor Freddy Boey, and NTU President Emeriti, Professors Cham Tao Soon and Su Guaning.

A total of 557 students had graduated from the former NTI in 1985, which at that time had only three schools – the School of Civil & Structural Engineering, School of Electrical & Electronic Engineering and the School of Mechanical & Production Engineering.

Two of that cohort’s better known graduates are Mr Inderjit Singh, a member of NTU’s Board of Trustees, and Ms Lee Bee Wah, Member of Parliament for Nee Soon GRC. Both are also co-chairpersons of the Class of 1985’s 30th Anniversary Dinner celebrations organising committee.

Early struggles and subsequent rise

The former NTI had admitted its first students in July 1982 to train qualified engineers to meet the demands of Singapore’s growing economy which emphasised technology-intensive and value-added industries.
When the pioneer cohort graduated in 1985, Singapore was going through a period of economic recession, but the well-rounded programmes at the former NTI enabled many of the engineering graduates to also carve out a career in diverse fields such as banking and finance.

Today, NTU’s College of Engineering is one of the largest in the world with six schools, comprising about 2,000 faculty members and staff, and a student population of 14,000.

Launch of the book “Thirty Years, Hundred Stories”

At the dinner, a new book “Thirty Years, Hundred Stories” published by the Class of 1985, was presented to PM Lee. The 120-page book, which contains a foreword by Mr Lee, chronicles Singapore’s engineering accomplishments in the past 30 years that have made a contribution towards improving conditions in this country.

In his foreword, Mr Lee said the book tells a story of how human ingenuity and good engineering had helped transform Singapore which had limited resources.

The book, which retails at S$19.90 before GST, is available at the Institute of South-east Asian Studies (ISEAS), and from October 2015, at Kinokuniya and Times bookstores.

Said Prof Boey: “It captures stories on engineering accomplishments over 30 years as told by the Class of 85. I’m sure the book will be an engaging read for our young generation and may inspire some to pursue a career in engineering.”

Importance of the alumni in NTU’s rise

While noting that NTU has come a long way since it started with just three engineering schools in 1985, Professor Boey stressed that the support of its alumni is a key reason why the University has progressed over the years.

To date, the NTU Class of 1985 Pioneer Fund, which was set up in 2005, has now raised S$3.1 million with matching government grant.

“As alumni, you play an important role in NTU’s advancement,” said Professor Boey.

“The University’s reputation is built not only upon its own achievements, but also through its alumni.  You are indeed our exemplary pioneers. Our Class of 1985 is a sterling example I hope current and future students of NTU will strive to emulate.”

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Media Contact:

Tan Yo-Hinn
Assistant Director
Corporate Communications Office
Nanyang Technological University
Tel: 6790 4889

About Nanyang Technological University (NTU)

A research-intensive public university, Nanyang Technological University (NTU) has 33,500 undergraduate and postgraduate students in the colleges of Engineering, Business, Science, and the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences. NTU also has a new medical school, the Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine, set up jointly with Imperial College London.

NTU is also home to four world-class autonomous institutes – the National Institute of Education, the S Rajaratnam School of International Studies, Earth Observatory of Singapore, and the Singapore Centre on Environmental Life Sciences Engineering – and various leading research centres such as the Nanyang Environment & Water Research Institute (NEWRI), Energy Research Institute @ NTU (ERI@N) and the Institute on Asian Consumer Insight (ACI).

A fast growing university with an international outlook, NTU is putting its global stamp on Five Peaks of Excellence: Sustainable Earth, Future Healthcare, New Media, New Silk Road, and Innovation Asia.

Besides the main Yunnan Garden campus, NTU also has a satellite campus in Singapore’s science and tech hub, one north, and a third campus in Novena, Singapore’s medical district.

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