About 24,000 eager visitors thronged NUS Kent Ridge and Bukit Timah campuses during NUS Open Day on 11 March. The full-day event featured 112 speakers, 126 talks, 24 programme booths as well as 30 student activity booths, providing an insightful introduction to the University’s transformative education experience, including academic programmes, overseas opportunities and residential life.
NUS’ youngest faculty — School of Continuing and Lifelong Education (SCALE) — participated in Open Day for the first time, showcasing final year projects by four students from the Bachelor of Technology (BTech) degree programmes, a robot designed and built by a BTech student team, as well as five talks covering the BTech programmes, Undergraduate Certificate Courses and Executive Development Programmes offered by SCALE. The School also launched a talk series titled “It Begins with NUS”, with the first session held on Open Day focusing on process innovation.
A number of mobile booths also made their inaugural appearance at the Stephen Riady Centre Atrium, including NUS Overseas Colleges (NOC); Business Analytics as well as Data Science and Analytics; Global Engineering Programme; and NUS Engineering. Three vehicles designed and built by students — The Delta, the world’s lightest electric paraglider trike; Solarcopter; and Bumblebee, an autonomous underwater vehicle — were on display, drawing oohs and aahs from the crowd.
Sharing their experience with attentive visitors at the three NOC talks were several student entrepreneurs who had completed the NOC programme, one of them being final year student from NUS Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) Goh Jian Kai, who co-founded RateX with two fellow NOC alumni. Start-up founders who are NOC alumni also made a welcome appearance at the NOC booth, including NUS Science alumna Ms Tan Peck Ying, who founded PS Love and NUS Engineering undergraduate Chia Lih Wei, who co-founded TinyMOS.
Megan Neubronner, who checked out some of the FASS majors, as well as the Residential College programme, found Open Day enlightening. “I gained more perspective on courses I was interested in as I got to talk to the people who were actually studying the subject and know about their experiences within that course. It also introduced me to the Residential College programme and gave me more insight on each College's programme and how it differs from the others,” she said. She added that visiting the Centre for Future-ready Graduates’ booth exposed her to other skills that she needed to be sustainable in the future, many of which she had not been aware of previously.
This year’s Open Day also included a series of science busking performances at Education Resource Centre conducted by NUS Science Masters students from the Innovations in Science Teaching module. The students skilfully integrated scientific concepts into their line-up, which saw active participation from delighted visitors.
Student Village featured a selection of the University’s myriad clubs, arts groups as well as sports teams, and visitors were treated to an electrifying array of student performances. Cuddly NUS mascots entertained the crowd throughout the day, making special appearances at the photo booth and dancing, much to the delight of the spectators. A flash mob by some 20 Eusoff Hall hostelites took place at Stephen Riady Centre, with the students grooving to the beat of Mr Put It Down by Ricky Martin as well as two other songs.
Frequent tours provided visitors with the chance to explore Kent Ridge Campus beyond University Town, including Central Library, NUS Business School, NUS Design & Environment, Ridge View Residential College, University Cultural Centre and Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music.
At Bukit Timah campus, located in the middle of Singapore Botanic Gardens — a UNESCO World Heritage Site — NUS Law welcomed some 700 visitors who had the opportunity to speak with faculty and students, as well as witness a mock courtroom trial in full swing.
Leong Kai Yuan, formerly from Nanyang Junior College, found Open Day beneficial. In addition to checking out the FASS and Business booths, she attended the Business talk as well. "I got to meet people from the school; I asked all my questions and they cleared all my doubts," she said.