Whither USP?

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Comments (5)
  1. redDragon says:

    Who is this student? USP was always and will always remain an intellectual program. Yes I live in Utown and I do find that the residential programme provides us with opportunities we never had before, the interaction, togetherness and the dining experience. But this does not mean that the attitude of the people at the helm of the affairs turn a blind eye to the students who wish to live in these colleges. I recv, a financial support of 340 $ for the meal plan, which subsidizes my food costs to some extent, but with the added costs of residential experience, I guess, taking an MRT from my home sounds much nicer. And I shall be reminded everyday of my travel that I did not get the scholarship because someone else was more deserving than me.

  2. Zhiqi says:

    Hi Choon Hwee,

    Thanks for sharing your views on the dialogue session in the KRC article, in which my words have been paraphrased. I just wanted to point out that I work under Prof Tan Tai Yong but am not his secretary – it might be more accurate to refer to me as “one of Professor Tan’s staff” as I don’t wish to implicate others for what I’ve said.

    Also, perhaps I didn’t put across my point as elegantly as many of those who were also present at the session, but what I really meant was this: cost is no doubt an issue (and quite a significant one at that), but by no means the only one. Another challenge that USP probably faces is figuring out how to build a stronger learning culture, which will take a mindset shift and which will take time. This is something I personally feel a residential college experience may be able to help support, because the facilities explicitly make it possible to create an environment where learning permeates one’s life. It could take place anywhere in the College, at any time of the day, through formal discussions in class, casual thought-provoking conversations along the corridor, or late-night supper talks. Admittedly, I cannot say for sure whether this clause of mandatory residence will prove to be effective in serving this mission, but without giving it a try we also would not know it wouldn’t. In this regard, I hardly consider myself a “convert” to the UTown experience, at best agnostic.

    Then again, however wonderful this experience may turn out to be, accessibility and inclusivity remain an issue, that I agree with you. But my point is, I think we should perhaps give some thought to other points of consideration that the decisions makers may have before we question their decision on one single issue. In any case, I said this at the dialogue session and I will say it again: my views do not in any way represent the views of the USP administration or of my office. The only reason I decided to chip in was because of my involvement in USP when I was still an undergraduate. Hope all these clarify my views somewhat.

    Best regards,

    1. Koh Choon Hwee says:

      Dear Zhiqi,

      Thank you very much for your comments! I have edited the post, and clarified that the views you expressed do not represent NUS or USP at all. I am sorry I missed that during the feedback session and did not add in the qualifications in the original article. I also edited the part about the “convert”, I must have remembered wrongly and for that I apologize!

      I certainly love USP and agree with many points you raised. I may be concerned with accessibility and inclusivity, but there are other aspects of the issue as well.

      I think at this point KRC has done enough to raise the awareness of the accessibility and inclusivity aspects, and the decision makers will judge if they are important enough to affect USP’s direction, and we will respect that.

      Thanks again,
      Choon Hwee.

  3. loltastic says:

    i’d like to know how many minority races and foreigners there are in usp and how this compares to the rest of nus…

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