Eusoff Hall marks 65th anniversary with gala dinner celebrating close ties and camaraderie

A gala dinner to mark Eusoff Hall’s 65th anniversary saw some 200 alumni from the Class of 1962 to the present rekindling their friendships and spirit of camaraderie as students and staff joined the celebration at the NUSS Kent Ridge Guild House on 1 December 2022.

After a string of performances by Eusoff Hall’s very own dance and music groups, the celebratory dinner culminated in a cake-cutting ceremony led by the Presidents of Eusoff Hall’s Junior Common Room Committee (JCRC). Applause and cheer rang out as Madam Yeong Poy Yee (JCRC President, 1962) and Ms Celine Yeow Sze Ki (JCRC President, 2022), the oldest and youngest JCRC Presidents respectively, took to the stage to cut the cake to mark the Hall’s six and a half decades.

“Eusoff Hall has given me opportunities to discover and develop new talents that I would otherwise not have been able to,” shared Celine, a final-year student in the Department of Electrical Engineering. “Seeing generations of Eusoffians come together, still standing proud and strong with the Eusoffian spirit, is really heart-warming and shows that the Eusoff experience is truly a lifelong one,” she added.

Donors journeying with Eusoff Hall

The gala dinner was held in appreciation of donors and supporters of the Eusoff Endowed Bursary, which was established in 2018 in conjunction with the hall’s 60th anniversary. In just five years, the donors’ contributions have enabled Eusoff Hall to raise over S$1.6 million, benefiting more than 300 needy Eusoffians to date.

Responding to the heightened need for financial support during the pandemic years, the Hall accelerated fundraising for the endowed bursary in 2019 through the Eusoff Benefactor Drive. Thanks to the efforts of the alumni and the benefactors, the bursary fund grew by S$860,000 between 2020 and 2022.

Eusoff Hall Master Associate Professor Qiu Anqi expressed her gratitude to the donors “who have stood by and continued to support the Hall with their generosity and commitment” during the pandemic. Assoc Prof Qiu also thanked the donors for giving their time and talent, “which have inspired current students on the virtue of service to others and in doing something bigger than ourselves.”

As part of the celebration, the Hall also launched the Eusoff Endowed Student Development Fund to support student-run activities and development programmes in Eusoff Hall. Contributed by Eusoff Hall alumni and other sponsors, the growing fund has already reached S$65,000 and will go towards supporting Eusoff Hall’s residential programmes and student activities for nurturing the next generation of leaders.

From roots to fruits

Eusoff Hall finds its roots in the former Eusoff College, which was established in November 1958 as the first female residential hall of the University of Malaya in Singapore. Inheriting the legacy of Eusoff College, Eusoff Hall came into its own in 1988 and was officially opened by then President Wee Kim Wee on 5 August 1989.

Eusoff Hall bears the name of the eponymous Dato Panglima Kinta Haji Mohamed Eusoff, CBE, JP, LLD, Pro-Chancellor of the then University of Malaya in Singapore and Chairman of the University Council from 1953 to 1957. The Hall was named after him in recognition of his outstanding services to education.

Over the years, Eusoff Hall has developed residential programmes with a special focus on the development of sports, artistic talents and voluntary service among its residents. Eusoff Hall is well-known for its annual stage performance held since 1991, where students manage all aspects of the production right from script-writing and directing to the building of sets as well as marketing.

Eusoff Hall also shines in sports with its unprecedented win of seven straight Inter-Hall Games (IHG) titles from AY1997/98 to AY2013/14 and again from AY2016/17 to AY2019/20. The Hall also organises the annual Gathering of Eusoff Leaders, a platform to inculcate responsible leadership, empower leaders with skills, and foster harmony in working towards common goals.

Ms Nikki Batrisya, a Eusoff Hall resident who is also a third-year student at the Faculty of Dentistry, shared about her experiences. “Talent and skills are developed here in Eusoff Hall, a safe place which provides me the opportunity to learn and grow myself holistically as a student athlete. It was extremely heartening to be able to observe the gathering of many Eusoff alumni from generations before me.”

“University life is an important time for young adults to gain specialist knowledge alongside personal growth,” said Assoc Prof Qiu. “Eusoff Hall hopes to continue being an avenue to empower all current and future Eusoffians to be future leaders through experiential learning that promotes healthy personal development, inter-personal skills, and responsible leadership,” she added.

The gala dinner capped off a milestone year for Eusoff Hall during which they also held an Eusoff Hall Dance Production on 5 February, the Eusoff Charity Golf Tournament on 31 March and Eusoff Fiesta and Homecoming on 1 April. While raising funds to help those in need, these events also demonstrated the close ties among its alumni and the bonds forged between residents which transcend their university years.

By Eusoff Hall