NTU statements: 2-4 March 2009
For immediate release
University Statement on scholarship (4 March 2009 at 7.30 pm):
David Widjaja’s academic performance was below the requirements of the Asean Undergraduate Scholarship award. He was given 3 letters by the University (10 Aug 2007, 22 Jan 2008 and 18 Aug 2008) advising him to improve on his academic performance and urging him to do his best in the coming examinations. The letters also advised him to seek help and to inform the university if there are any extenuating circumstances that affected his performance. Special considerations are given for valid reasons such as medical condition, depression and family problems.
Copies of these letters were also mailed to his parents. As his performance did not improve, the scholarship was eventually terminated in February 2009. However there was no need for any refunds. There is no bond attached to the scholarship apart from the 3-year bond applicable to all international students under the tuition grant scheme. Upon termination of the scholarship, the tuition fee that he would need to pay is about $3,360. The letter informing him that the scholarship has been withdrawn also states that financial aid is available should he need it. We understand from the family that this is not a problem.
Under the terms of the Asean Undergraduate Scholarship, renewal of the scholarship is based on Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA). The CGPA requirement is 3.5 on a scale of 5, which is comparable to other institutions.
University Statement on counselling services (3 March 2009 at 4.30 pm):
The University administers a multi-level approach to help students, faculty and staff who require help. Help is available from various channels on-campus. This includes counsellors at NTU’s Student Counselling Centre (SCC), medical professionals from the medical centre at NTU, School mentors and supervisors or Hall Fellows and Officers. For international students, frontline staff at the International Student Centre are available to help ensure a smooth transition for foreign students at NTU. The University also has an in-house SCC with three on-site professional counsellors that cater to members of the NTU community at-large. Besides providing counselling services, the Centre conducts and organises regular talks, programmes or workshops for students.
Common topics for the talks or programmes can include managing stress like anxiety management, workshops on study techniques and many others related directly to academic and personal life. If there are individuals who show signs or symptoms of distress, professionals at these programmes normally encourage students to seek counselling or consultation.
Online support is also available via the SCC website where self-help resources such as tests on anxiety, depression and stress are easily accessible to students who can take them and use the test to assess if they need professional help. A hotline is available for any NTU students, faculty and staff who require assistance.
University Statement (3 March 2009 at 5.00 pm):
The University has initiated a fully-coordinated effort involving NTU’s counselling services centre, on-campus medical centre and international students centre. Round-the-clock professional supervision and attention is available to any party who may need help at this time.
The university’s first priority is to ensure a smooth transition for the family in their arrangements and to help with the healing process.
Counsellors, a medical doctor, international students centre officer, staff and faculty members are constantly with David’s family during their stay in Singapore.
The university senior management, including the President Dr Su Guaning, Senior Associate Provost, Prof Er Meng Hwa and Secretary to the University, Mr Anthony Teo, together with members of the Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia, met with the parents and family and friends of David to offer them assistance, comfort and support.
NTU arranged for David’s friends to meet with his family last night to share with them on David’s time at the university and to help give them some closure. The university also arranged for international students and NTU graduates from Indonesia to meet with Dean of Students, Prof Lok Tat Seng, for counselling and information.
Special care is also given to family members and friends of the NTU community who are affected by the tragic incident. Immediate trauma counselling service was open to all at the electrical and electronic engineering school.
The counselling hotline has been emailed to the NTU community since yesterday and officers manning various hotlines on campus have been briefed to direct calls for help to the counselling centre.
University Statement (2 March 2009 at 2.00 pm; superseded by the updated statement below at 7.20pm):
A final year student, David Hartanto Widjaja, 21, from the electrical and electronic engineering school is believed to have stabbed Associate Professor Chan Kap Luk, 45, this morning, 2 March 2009, and to have subsequently fallen off the linkway between two blocks. The ambulance and the police were called immediately. Mr Widjaja was pronounced dead. Mr Widjaja’s parents and Prof Chan’s family members have been notified. Prof Chan is receiving medical treatment at the National University Hospital and is recovering well.
The university board of trustees, management and the NTU community, much saddened by the tragic loss, express heartfelt condolences to the family of Mr Widjaja.
President NTU, Dr Su Guaning, says, “The university is deeply shocked and saddened by what has happened. The matter will be investigated thoroughly. The university community will rally together at this difficult time and do our utmost to help the student’s family, the professor and his family, and those traumatised by the incident.”
The University’s counselling professionals have been mobilised to help and the school is assisting the police with investigations.
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