The Distinguished Australian Alumni Celebration on 25 May was indeed a night to remember for many. This was especially so for Dr Tan Chin Nam, recipient of the Eminent Alumnus Award 2012 and Mr Jeffery Tan, recipient of the Outstanding Young Alumnus Award 2012, both for their contributions to Singapore and achievements which brought honour to their Australian alma mater.
Graced by Guest-of-Honour Dr Lee Boon Yang, Chairman of Keppel Corporation, and an alumnus of The University of Queensland, the Distinguished Australian Alumni Celebration was co-organised by the Australian Alumni Singapore (AAS) and the Australian High Commission, and generously sponsored by CPA Australia.
The evening commenced with an opening address by HE Mr Doug Chester, the Australian High Commissioner to Singapore. He shared about the developments of Australian education and the significant strides it has made in becoming a robust system that sees more than 9,000 Singaporean students attending Australian tertiary institutions every year.
This was followed by Dr Lee’s personal memories of Australia as he reminisced about his days as an undergraduate with the School of Veterinary Science at The University of Queensland. He also shared about how he had learnt to see things from multiple perspectives, especially so when Asian students in Australia during his days were few and far between. And now, his daughter is following in his footsteps and studying at his alma mater.
The highlight of the evening was the presentation of the Awards.
Dr Lee presented Dr Tan Chin Nam with the Eminent Alumnus Award 2012, the highest honour in the Distinguished Australian Awards 2012. This is in recognition of Dr Tan’s achievements and contributions to Singapore with more than 30 years in the Singapore Public Service and ongoing directorships on various boards, including the Media Development Authority’s International Advisory Panel and Raffles Education Corporation Ltd. Dr Tan is an alumnus of The University of Newcastle.
The Outstanding Young Alumnus Award 2012 was presented to Mr Jeffrey Tan by Dr Lee Boon Yang. As Head of the Commune Programme at the National Arts Council, Mr Tan has been a passionate advocate of the arts and has spent his career promoting arts education. His achievements and contribution to the community has indeed done the alumni proud and he continues to be an inspiration for many. Mr Tan is an alumnus of The Queensland University of Technology.
All the three universities mentioned above, The University of Queensland, The University of Newcastle and The Queensland University of Technology, are Institution Members of AAS. So is CPA Australia.
After the presentation, AAS members continued to network with the guests over canapes and wine. As the evening drew to a close, guests were each given a goodies bag containing a book of photographs of orchids produced by Mr Simon Ho, Immediate Past President of AAS, and a pictorial book of Colombo Plan Scholars, specially published by the Australian High Commission for this occasion. The photo exhibition, to mark the 60th Anniversary of Colombo Plan Scholarship, is now on at the Australian High Commission until 29 July 2012.
Jude Yue and Jedidiah Tan
Courtesy of Australian High Commission