Joining Sota her best decision

SINGAPORE - The hard decision to go through Secondary 2 all over again paid off for Ms Ma Yue Ru.

Chasing her passion for dance, she decided in 2008 to switch to the School of the Arts (Sota) after two years at the Singapore Chinese Girls’ School. At the time Sota was new and did not have Secondary 3 classes. But that did not stop her.

And now the 20-year-old, who started dancing at the age of six, is in her second year at the prestigious Boston Conservatory in the United States.

“Dance was something I never really expected to get into as a career,” said Ms Ma, who hopes to join a professional dance company in Singapore, Europe or the US after graduating in 2016.

“Now I cannot even fathom what my life would be like otherwise.”

The middle child of an engineer and accountant said that what drew her to Sota was the enthusiasm and passion she saw in its teachers during an open house.

Her years in Sota prepared her for the rigour of life in an arts conservatory, she added.

“Balancing the arts and academics was definitely a challenge, but what kept me going was really just the stubborn determination to prove that I could do well in both,” said Ms Ma, who scored 43 out of 45 points for her International Baccalaureate diploma.

As part of Sota’s pioneer cohort, she remembers the “spontaneity, a love of doing things that were out of the ordinary, and quite a sense of adventure” that the students had.

“Joining Sota turned out to be the best decision I have ever made.”

Amelia Teng

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