International Relations Office
International Exchange Day (IED) 2012, organised by the International Relations Office, was held amidst much vibrancy and fanfare on 6 September at the University Town Plaza. IED 2012 marks a milestone as it celebrates 10 years of increasing awareness and interest in International engagement amongst NUS undergraduate students through its marquee event.
Keeping with the NUS spirit of encouraging a global experience, IED 2012 was themed ‘i-Journey’ which refers to international journey. The University Town Plaza came alive with vibrant colours and vivid displays of stories and quotes from students who had embarked on their own i-Journeys.
University Town Plaza filled with i-Journey event exhibits
The event kicked off with a traditional Dikir Barat performance followed by a scintillating choreography by the NUS Salsa Performance Team. NUS President Prof Tan Chorh Chuan officially launched IED 2012 which was also attended by dignitaries from the diplomatic corps as well as colleagues from the various faculties and NUS offices.
[L-R] IRO Director A/Prof Anne Pakir, NUS President Prof Tan Chorh Chuan, and
Vice President (University and Global Relations) Prof Lily Kong launching the event
Members of Keseri Puthera (KP), a Malay performing arts group part of the
Malay Language Society at Singapore Polytechnic
President Tan also gave away prizes for the inaugural iJourney video competition organised by IRO. Several students wowed online audiences and garnered support through Facebook ‘likes’ by capturing beautiful frames of their i-Journey experiences. Mr Yang Sheng from the School of Design and Environment snagged first place for his unique depiction of his exchange journey to École nationale supérieure des Arts Décoratifs (EnsAD) in France.
Yang Sheng receiving his prize from President Tan
Close to 4,000 students visited the booths and exhibits to learn more about the programmes and opportunities available. This ranged not only from typical exchanges but also International Summer Programmes (i-SP), International Internships (i-Intern), and International Research Attachment Programmes (i-RAP). Students were also curious to know more about the recently enhanced NUS Awards for Study Abroad or NASA funding opportunities available to them.
Friendly IRO officers assisting the students
Recognising US and European countries as popular exchange destinations, Prof Tan challenged students to ‘look beyond the conventional’ and urged them to be open-minded about the opportunities presented to them. Emphasizing IRO’s commitment to ensure that no eligible student should be deprived of a global experience due to financial concerns, Prof Tan encouraged students to seek support in the form of awards and scholarships to lighten their financial load.
Director of the NUS International Relations Office, A/Prof Anne Pakir reiterated the office’s drive in delivering on its mission of fostering closer international partnerships for transformative global engagement. She highlighted the five-fold growth in the past 10 years of the number of students embarking on exchange as well as new global stints.
Guest of Honour, NUS President Prof Tan Chorh Chuan, Vice President (University and Global Relations)
Prof Lily Kong, and IRO Director A/Prof Anne Pakir with student volunteers
The IRO Team
The International Relations Office will continue to seek global opportunities for students to expand their horizons and to craft their very own i-Journeys in the global marketplace.
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