SINGAPORE - They will pursue courses related to the environment and water sectors, such as civil engineering and atmospheric science, either locally or abroad.
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Below is a statement released today by the National Environment Agency (NEA):
TAKING ENVIRONMENTAL AND WATER STUDIES TO NEW HEIGHTS
18 undergraduates awarded the National Environment and Water (NEW) Scholarship while six others will pursue a PhD in Environment and Water Technologies
SINGAPORE - 18 promising individuals received the National Environment and Water (NEW) Scholarship from Minister for the Environment and Water Resources, Dr Vivian Balakrishnan, at the NEW Scholarship Award Ceremony this afternoon. Six other recipients were awarded the National Research Foundation (Environment and Water Technologies) PhD Scholarship by the Environment and Water Industry Programme Office (EWI).
Jointly offered by PUB, the national water agency and the National Environment Agency (NEA), the NEW Scholarship offers aspiring young talents with a keen interest to work in the fast growing and dynamic environment and water sectors a scholarship for their undergraduate or postgraduate studies. Upon graduation, they will be offered a challenging career with PUB or NEA. A total of 104 NEW Scholarships have been offered by both agencies since its inception in 2008.
"The NEW Scholarship augments PUB and NEA's ongoing efforts to groom the next generation of leaders and specialists who have the passion and ability to contribute to Singapore's efforts in water and environmental sustainability. The environment and water sector is a growing industry and we hope that this scholarship will provide the avenue for more bright young students to make a difference in the management of our precious resources. For those who want to delve more into research, the NRF (EWT) PhD scholarship is one of EWI's strategies for grooming research talent for the vibrant water industry in Singapore and it offers promising young talent the opportunities to innovate in water technologies," Mr Chew Men Leong, Chief Executive of PUB and Executive Director of EWI.
"We are heartened to have these young talent on board to contribute to the environment and water sector, and advance Singapore's efforts in environmental sustainability. The NEW Scholarship gives our keen and dynamic youth an opportunity to make a difference and also underscores NEA and PUB's commitment to supporting and grooming young people," added Ronnie Tay, Chief Executive Officer of NEA.
Applicants were interviewed and assessed on their suitability for the scholarship either through the NEW Internship programme or assessment centres. All 18 scholarship recipients will pursue courses related to the environment and water sectors, including disciplines such as Civil Engineering and Atmospheric Science, either locally or abroad.
Upon graduation, they will serve a bond of four or six years with either PUB or NEA.
"I have a very strong interest in water and wastewater technology, which was why I chose to pursue a Diploma in Environmental & Water Technology. Having received the PUB Diploma Scholarship while I was studying at Ngee Ann Polytechnic, I was exposed to many opportunities for self-development and improvement. I'm excited to embark on my journey as a NEW scholar and I believe my course of study in Civil Engineering in the UK will equip me with the appropriate knowledge and skills to contribute to PUB and to society," says 20-year-old Lim Yimin, a Diploma in Environmental & Water Technology (DEWT) graduate who has received multiple prizes and awards during her DEWT course.
Another recipient, M Thirukkumaran, chose the NEW Scholarship because it would give him the ability to serve and contribute to the community, and leverage his interest in the environment. "Since young, I have been interested in how the world works, and more importantly, why it works that way. This led me to realise the importance of environment and of sustainable and responsible development to preserve it. I wanted to do something that is beneficial to the environment and help conserve it for generations to come." He has chosen to read Business Analytics at the National University of Singapore as he believes this can help enhance NEA's predictive capabilities, which will aid the agency in better anticipating situations and allocating resources more optimally.
Thirukkumaran, who is a former Normal Academic stream student, also hopes that his example will inspire others. "Issues such as less than stellar family/financial circumstances and background do not mean that you cannot achieve your dreams, especially in Singapore. Ultimately, the only variables that really matter are the magnitude of your passion and determination, and the willingness to work hard through obstacles. I'm honoured and immensely grateful to NEA and MEWR for providing me with this opportunity."
National Research Foundation (Environment and Water Technologies) or NRF (EWT) PhD Scholarship
Taking environmental and water studies a step further are six NRF (EWT) PhD scholars, with a strong passion for research. They are pursuing studies in specialised areas which will help enhance our ability to produce clean water, treat wastewater and protect the health of Singapore's water systems.
One newly awarded NRF (EWT) PhD Scholar, Kok Wai Kit Jerome, who will pursue his Doctorate at NUS at the Department of Biological Sciences said' "I enjoy the dynamism of the discipline as the ocean is a vastly complex system. In addition, water is a key resource for Singapore cutting across various sectors. As such, I hope that my research in the field of regulating algal productivity will contribute to protecting the health of the water catchments in Singapore."