The National University of Singapore's University Town (UTown) has become the "campus core that was previously missing in Kent Ridge", said NUS president Tan Chorh Chuan on Thursday.
With 24-hour study and recreational facilities and a sports hall set amid four undergraduate residential colleges and one graduate college, it has emerged as a venue of choice for many. The lecture halls and classrooms of the mega-complex are used by up to 10,000 students from all over NUS every week, said Professor Tan, with many more coming to its rolling green for the lively activity and "a buzz which is hard to define".
UTown, parts of which started running in 2011, is the first college here where some 4,000 students and professors live and learn under the same roof. Its students, especially those who had lived in other types of NUS housing, were effusive about their experience.
"It is much more fun because you get to know the people you live with so well," said graduate student Emily Chong, 23, who previously stayed at Prince George's Park. Each residential college has a master and rector, who along with students are influential in giving it a distinctive character.
Law student Abhinav Ratan Mohan, 21, said he has gone to the red-light district, met migrant workers and soon, gravediggers - all as part of a community engagement module in his college.
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