NTU ramps up engagement in the HDB heartlands
Nanyang Technological University (NTU Singapore) is ramping up its engagement with the surrounding heartlands.
NTU will be launching more community-based activities, education-related programmes and social initiatives that benefit residents in the South West District, which includes Jurong, where the university is located, Choa Chu Kang and West Coast.
The university will also work closely with community partners such as the South West Community Development Council (SWCDC), to assist in addressing issues and challenges faced by residents.
These initiatives were announced at the inaugural NTU-South West CDC Networking Session this evening (27 July) at The Wave, NTU’s recently-opened sports hall.
It was launched by Deputy Prime Minister & Coordinating Minister for Economic and Social Policies Mr Tharman Shanmugaratnam who was the event’s Guest of Honour, South West CDC Vice-Chairman Mr Ang Wei Neng, and NTU President Professor Bertil Andersson.
The event was attended by more than 100 guests, comprising grassroots advisers, senior grassroots leaders, staff from People’s Association and South West CDC, NTU staff and faculty.
Prof Andersson said, “A university does not exist by itself. It is also defined by its ties with those around it. As a responsible member of the larger community, NTU is committed to giving back and remaining relevant to society. Our decision to ramp up our engagement activities in our “neighbourhood” is aimed at better serving the needs of those around us by leveraging NTU’s resources, expertise and research capabilities.”
He added that closer ties with the community will enable NTU to better understand evolving issues and challenges which are being shaped by changing local and overseas trends and developments.
“This would help us ensure our research and programmes stay relevant to the community. As an institution of higher learning, NTU is at the forefront of knowledge and the latest discoveries. Given NTU’s high global standing, we want to share our successes with the community and let them leverage from NTU’s expertise so it is a win-win for the community and the university,” said Prof Andersson.
An example of this is the Did You Know series of free public talks that will be held on the last Friday evening of every month. To be delivered by NTU experts in their respective fields, it aims to discuss the hottest research topics, latest trends affecting society and how to prepare for jobs of tomorrow.
The speaker at the first Did You Know series was top geologist Professor Kerry Sieh, Director of the Earth Observatory of Singapore at NTU. His talk was titled The Sustainability of Singapore and its Neighbours in the Face of Earthquakes, Tsunamis, Volcanoes and a Changing Climate.
NTU’s three-pronged approach to closer ties with community
NTU’s community engagement plan will be guided by three key strategies – collaboration with partners; leveraging on research capabilities to improve the quality of life; and education and enrichment.
Some community-based research projects which have started include the test-bedding of research technology that could be useful to the community.
This includes interactive wellness games developed by the Joint NTU-UBC Research Centre of Excellence in Active Living for the Elderly (LILY), and more energy-efficient solutions developed by the Energy Research Institute at NTU (ERI@N).
NTU students are also planning to design a ramp for easier wheelchair access into ground floor HDB units in Boon Lay where residents had experienced difficulty reaching their homes due to the presence of a small flight of steps at the door of each unit.
New NTU initiatives for the community
A slew of upcoming activities and programmes is being planned.
Besides the monthly talk series, customised public talks by NTU faculty on topics of interest, such as food safety, health and wellness will also be conducted.
Others in the pipeline include public events to showcase NTU’s research projects and the potential benefits.
NTU’s College of Professional and Continuing Education (PaCE) and SWCDC will also collaborate in developing programmes for Professionals, Managers, Executives and Technicians (PMET), including co-developing industry specific courses for PMETs to facilitate job transition and skills upgrading.
Tan Yo-Hinn (Mr)
Corporate Communications Office
Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
T: +65 6790 4889
About Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
A research-intensive public university, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore) has 33,500 undergraduate and postgraduate students in the colleges of Engineering, Business, Science, Humanities, Arts, & Social Sciences, and its Interdisciplinary Graduate School. It also has a medical school, the Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine, set up jointly with Imperial College London.
NTU is also home to world-class autonomous institutes – the National Institute of Education, S Rajaratnam School of International Studies, Earth Observatory of Singapore, and Singapore Centre for 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).
Ranked 11th in the world, NTU has also been ranked the world’s top young university for the last four years running. The University’s main campus has been named one of the Top 15 Most Beautiful in the World. NTU also has a campus in Novena, Singapore’s medical district.
For more information, visit www.ntu.edu.sg.