NTU hosts Honduran President Porfirio Lobo Sosa and delegation
His Excellency Mr Porfirio Lobo Sosa, the President of Honduras is visiting the National Institute of Education (NIE) this afternoon as part of his three-day working visit to Singapore. The objective of the visit to the national teacher training institute at Nanyang Technological University (NTU) is to learn more about Singapore’s education system, with a focus on higher education and NIE’s role in teacher training. This is the first visit by a Honduran Head of State to a Singapore university.
President Lobo is accompanied by his delegation that includes the President of the National Congress Mr Juan Orlando Hernández Alvarado, Minister of Foreign Affairs Mr Mario Miguel Canahuati, Minister of Communications, Public Works and Transport Mr Miguel Rodrigo Pastor, other senior government representatives and officials. President Lobo and his delegation will be received by NTU President Dr Su Guaning, President-Designate and Provost Professor Bertil Andersson, NIE Principal Officer Associate Professor Quek Jin Jiong and Dean of Teacher Education Professor Tan Oon Seng.
During their visit, the Honduran President and his delegation will be briefed on Singapore’s distinctive educational institutions and programmes within an integrated higher education system. This includes NTU’s broad-based and inter-disciplinary education covering science and technology, business and the arts, entrepreneurial and leadership skills to prepare students for the global working world. The delegation will also learn how NIE works closely with the Ministry of Education to equip teachers with the necessary values, skills and knowledge to meet with the ever-changing demands of the local and global education landscape.
NIE unveils “Collaborative Classrooms”
President Lobo and his delegation will also be introduced to NIE’s “Collaborative Classrooms”, which aim to stimulate creativity and promote closer engagement in learning. The new Collaborative Classrooms, aligned with NIE’s strategic roadmap to prepare teachers for the 21st century, are designed to drive group discussions and interactions. First piloted in September 2009, NIE has 5 such functional classrooms to date and intends to set up 65 Collaborative Classrooms by July 2012.
Breaking away from the traditional style of classroom learning, these classrooms offer a technology-enhanced environment for student-teachers to direct their own learning, while giving them more opportunities to have closer interactions with their tutors and peers. The rooms feature small group seating as well as interactive LCD screens and wireless Internet connection, allowing every student-teacher access to their own notebook computer, while the LCD displays create the group virtual space via their notebooks.
The Honduran delegation will see how the LCD display screens enable student-teachers to conduct discussion within their own groups and to present their work to the rest of the classmates. To further enhance the learning experience and stimulate creativity, the classroom’s ambience is decorated with vibrant colours.
Universities crucial to knowledge economy
Speaking on the significance of the visit, Dr Su Guaning, NTU President says, “We are very honoured to host His Excellency President Porfirio Lobo Sosa and his delegation. This is a historic occasion as it marks the first time that a Honduran Head of State is visiting a university in Singapore. The Honduran delegation is interested in how to prepare the country for a knowledge-driven economy of the future. One key determinant of success for this is human talent development. We are happy to share our insights and experience in training and developing people, while adopting innovative and effective technologies that can enhance teaching and learning outcomes.”
During the last decade, Singapore’s education system has remained consistently at or near the top of most major world education ranking systems, particularly in science, technology and mathematics. At the heart of this development have been the way Singapore recruits and trains teachers, develops outstanding school leaders, and deploys them across the system.
President Lobo and his delegation are on a working visit to Singapore from 23 to 25 February 2011. He will then visit Kuwait, before returning home.
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Feisal Abdul Rahman
Senior Assistant Director (Publicity, Media & Account Relations)
Corporate Communications Office
Nanyang Technological University
Tel: 6790 6687
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