SINGAPORE - Singer Stefanie Sun and Cultural Medallion artist Mr Ho Ho Ying were conferred awards on Saturday - but the awards had nothing to do with arts or entertainment.
The luminaries, together with 29 other Nanyang Technological University (NTU) graduates, were conferred awards honouring outstanding NTU alumni by Education Minister Mr Heng Swee Keat at NTU's Nanyang Auditorium.
Besides the artists, a senior policewoman was also one of the award recipients of the Nanyang Distinguished Alumni Award - NTU's highest honour for its alumni.
Zuraidah Abdullah, a 52-year-old civil engineering NTU degree holder, is the highest-ranking female officer in the Singapore Police Force as Senior Assistant Commissioner of Police (SAC), and the first Malay woman graduate to join the police force in 1986.
She is also the Chairman of the Malay Heritage Foundation and a member of the National Library Board.
Recounting her early years after graduating from NTU, Madam Zuraidah said: "when we graduated in 1985, the economy was bad and jobs in engineering were hard to come by.
"We did not give up. Instead, many of us took the opportunity to venture into non-engineering careers and did well."
Launched in 2005, the Nanyang Alumni Awards honour alumni's exemplary achievements in diverse fields, or their significant contributions to the betterment of NTU, the community or the society.
Individuals are selected for the honour they bring to the university through outstanding accomplishments in four categories: the Nanyang Distinguished Alumni Award, the Nanyang Alumni Achievement Award, the Nanyang Outstanding Young Alumni Award and the Nanyang Alumni Service Award.
Member of Parliament for Chua Chu Kang GRC, Ms Low Yen Ling was also one of the Nanyang Alumni Achievement Award recipients.