News Details | 10-Mar-2011

NTU launches unique dual-degree programme to groom future generation of CEOs and CTOs

Programme includes a one-year stint in top overseas university and internships at Silicon Valley

Nanyang Technological University (NTU) is launching a unique dual-degree programme which integrates the best of engineering science, business management and liberal arts studies.

Students taking this Renaissance Engineering Programme will graduate with two degrees – the Bachelor of Engineering Science and the Master of Science in Technology Management – in four-and-a-half years. One of the attractions of this programme is that the students will spend one year studying in a top overseas university, on top of internship opportunities in Silicon Valley.

The rigorous and all-rounded programme aims to produce graduates with deep engineering expertise, complemented with a broad base of knowledge from business management and liberal arts disciplines.

It will admit the brightest young minds and provide them with the knowledge and expertise to become outstanding leaders of industry.

NTU expects admission to be highly competitive and are targeting top students of the cohort. Intake will be limited to only 50 students, many of whom can be expected to be offered full scholarships and other forms of financial assistance to ensure that all who qualify for the programme and have financial needs will be helped.

NTU President-Designate and Provost, Professor Bertil Andersson, said: “As the bedrock of civilisation and modern cities, engineering has played a fundamental role in shaping our lives. Today, as the world faces pressing global issues related to climate change, an ageing population, healthcare needs, and the Earth’s sustainability, there is a need for future engineers to have interdisciplinary studies and research grounded in engineering.”

“The Renaissance Engineering Programme integrates the disciplines of engineering science, business management and liberal arts to educate a new generation of engineering leaders. These young people will be equipped to lead multidisciplinary teams to solve complex problems in the business world, and have the potential to be groomed into the Chief Executives and Chief Technology Officers of the future.”

Through the years, the engineering discipline has developed many specialised sub-disciplines, resulting in graduates with great depths of knowledge in their areas of specialisation. This programme is named the Renaissance Engineering Programme because it aims to also bring back the breadth of knowledge an engineer needs in the world today, besides depth in his chosen specialisation.

“In the face of rapid technological innovation and complex economic changes, it is not enough to be a technically competent engineer,” said Professor Freddy Boey, the incoming Provost of NTU, which has the world’s largest engineering college. “To make truly useful contributions that can improve human lives and uplift society as a whole, engineering leaders will also need to understand the full social ramifications of their work.”

“This programme ensures that NTU’s College of Engineering will continue to make significant contributions to Singapore’s growth and development through the nurturing of such engineering leaders who will spearhead research and development in strategic innovative technologies to improve society.”

The University of California, Berkeley (UC Berkeley), a top-ranked American state university, is NTU’s first overseas partner for the Renaissance Engineering Programme. NTU is discussing with other universities for them to join this programme as overseas partners.

Professor George W. Breslauer, UC Berkeley’s Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost, said his university is honoured to be NTU’s first overseas partner in this programme.

“UC Berkeley and NTU share a commitment to preparing leaders for our globally interdependent and technologically driven economy. The students in the Renaissance Engineering Programme will benefit from their time here at Berkeley and in Silicon Valley, and we will benefit from their drive, talents and diverse perspectives.”

As part of their summer internships in leading tech start-ups and multinational companies in Silicon Valley, students will get the rare opportunity to work with engineering professionals and technopreneurs to develop commercial products and systems.

“While they are here, the NTU students will take courses in their area of technological interest as well as courses in engineering leadership,” said Professor S. Shankar Sastry, Dean of UC Berkeley’s College of Engineering. “Moreover, they’ll have opportunities through our related seminars, workshops and internships to engage more deeply with the Bay Area innovation community. We’re very excited about this programme with NTU as it not only continues to deepen our relationship, but also creates opportunities for our students to form lasting relationships with Singapore’s future global leaders.”

Seminars will be held, with a strong focus on small-group learning and e-learning, rather than the traditional lecture-tutorial format. Students will be taught by faculty drawn from NTU’s College of Engineering, Nanyang Business School, College of Science, and the College of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences, who have been selected for their teaching excellence and mentoring ability.

Beyond on-campus learning at NTU, students will do their research projects in top multinational companies such as KBR, Keppel Corporation, Roche and SingTel. This will further enhance their experiential learning.

As this is a live-in programme, students will have quality time with their professors and fellow students in a conducive residential learning environment, said Professor Er Meng Joo, the programme director. “They will be paired with mentors – faculty, captains of industry and successful entrepreneurs – who will provide them with pastoral care and career guidance. The aim is to nurture them into all-rounded leaders with high intelligence and emotional quotients and also high adversity quotient.”

NTU has given talks on the programme to top junior college and polytechnic students and the response from these students and their parents has been enthusiastic. 

One such applicant is Sabareesh Nair, who has a near-perfect GPA score of 3.991 in his electrical and electronics engineering diploma course.

“Since young, I have been fascinated with how technology has constantly revolutionised our lives. I aspire to be a part of this revolution, to bring ground-breaking technologies to consumers one day. I believe that the programme will provide me with a holistic engineering education, which will equip me to solve problems in this ever-changing globalised world, and bring me a step closer to my dream of becoming a technopreneur.” 

Another future technopreneur is Miss Tee Mei Yi, who dreams of setting up an engineering business in the green energy sector. She has a perfect GPA score of 4 in her chemical and biomolecular engineering diploma course.

“This programme is different from conventional engineering courses. The cross-disciplinary approach will equip us to be better able to solve unexpected problems in other areas. The ability to deal with uncertainty and to solve unexpected problems is vital to being an engineer,” she said. “And the best part about the programme is the one-year overseas study and internship. The opportunity to be immersed in an environment of advanced technology and strong entrepreneurship is invaluable.”

The annual tuition fees for this programme are S$16,000 for Singaporeans, S$20,160 for Singapore Permanent Residents and S$27,520 for international students.

“This is a fully residential programme. The students will spend one year at a top-ranked overseas partner university. They will graduate with two degrees – a Bachelor of Engineering Science and the Master of Science in Technology Management. The costs of running this programme therefore don’t come cheap,” said Professor Boey.

“However, NTU will offer scholarships and financial assistance to all deserving students as we firmly believe the graduates from this programme will bring immense contributions to Singapore,” he said.

Students and their parents can get more information about the Renaissance Engineering Programme and other undergraduate courses at NTU’s Open House, which will be held at the university’s Yunnan Garden Campus on 12 March 2011. Talks on the programme will be held in Lecture Theatre 19A (North Spine) at 11am and 3pm.

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Media Contact:

Edgar Lee 
Senior Assistant Director
Corporate Communications Office
Nanyang Technological University
Office: (+65) 6790 6052

About Nanyang Technological University


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