IIE Networker - Spring 2010 - (Page 12)
INTERVIEW SERIES A Conversation with Professor Tan Chorh Chuan, President, National University of Singapore (NUS) By Leena Soman Tan Chorh Chuan, President of the National University of Singapore PROFESSOR TAN CHORH CHUAN became President of the National University of Singapore in December 2008. Currently the Deputy Chairman of Singapore’s Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), Professor Tan also serves as Senior Advisor to the Governing Board of DukeNUS Graduate Medical School, and as the Chair of the International Alliance of Research Universities, a consortium of ten leading research-intensive universities. He has been a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global University Leaders Forum since 2008. A renal physician, Professor Tan received his medical training at NUS, and research training at the Institute of Molecular Medicine, Oxford. He has held several leadership positions at NUS, including Dean of the NUS Faculty of Medicine from 1997-2000, NUS Provost, then Senior Deputy President from 20042008. As Deputy Chairman of the Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School Governing Board from 2004-2007, he played a key role in establishing the partnership. From 2000 to 2004 Professor Tan served as the Director of Medical Services, Ministry of Health, and was responsible for leading the public health response to the 2003 SARS epidemic. He received the Public Service Star in 2003 for outstanding contributions to overcoming SARS in Singapore, and the Public Administration Gold Medal in 2004 for his work in the Ministry of Health. IIENetworker: How do you define a global university? Professor Tan: I believe a global university encompasses at least seven dimensions. First, the vision and aspirations of the institution must be global. Second, global universities recruit from across the world the best students, faculty and administrators. Third, global universities should lead in innovative education that is adapted for, and capitalizes on, unique opportunities in the globalized world. They provide a rich and diverse multicultural learning environment with many possibilities for overseas educational exposure. Their graduates are thus well-prepared for work and life in many different cross-cultural settings. Fourth, these universities carry out high impact research because the creation of important new knowledge must necessarily precede its dissemination and application. Fifth, universities which are global pursue and contribute to developing new international benchmarks in education, research, and service. Sixth, global universities are key nodes in influential global networks, be they academic networks or consortia-type of arrangements with academic institutions and industry. Finally, global universities should contribute towards thought-leadership on global issues. IIENetworker: What are the most effective ways to produce globally competent citizens? Professor Tan: For our students to develop into globally effective citizens, it is critical for them to be immersed in a very diverse environment which enables them to learn, live, work and socialize with students and faculty from a wide range of cultural backgrounds. We have adopted two complementary approaches to achieve this. In “bringing the world to NUS,” we have created a rich and diverse community in the NUS campus. About 20 percent of our undergraduate students, 70 percent of our graduate students, and 50 percent of our faculty are from overseas, coming from more than 100 countries. In tandem, we also “take NUS students to the world.” NUS acts as a bridge for students to quality academic experiences in excellent universities around the world – about 50 percent of our undergraduates will have some form of overseas edu- cational exposure, and 20 percent will spend 6 months or more abroad. IIENetworker: NUS boasts more than sixty joint or double-degree programs with global universities and six overseas colleges to hone entrepreneurship. How do you define success? Professor Tan: I would consider such programs successful if they are able to attract truly excellent students and provide them with a distinctive and high quality educational experience that they would not otherwise have been able to access. In the longer term, I would expect the graduates and alumni of these programs to be leaders in their work and in society. For example, the NUS Overseas Colleges (NOC) program was first launched in 2002 to provide a unique globally-oriented experiential entrepreneurial education. There are currently six overseas colleges at key entrepreneurial hubs around the world – Silicon Valley, Philadelphia, Beijing, Shanghai, Stockholm and India. Students on the NOC program intern at dynamic startup companies for up to one year and also take entrepreneurship modules at partner universities.
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of IIE Networker - Spring 2010
IIE Networker - Spring 2010
Message from Allan E. Goodman
IIE Networker University Presidents Interview Series: Professor Tan Chorh Chuan, President, National University of Singapore (NUS)
2010 IIE Andrew Heiskell Awards: Best Practices in International Education
U.S.-India Exchange: Ready for a “New Era”?
Using Social Media to Recruit Indian Students Rahul Choudaha, World
Advancing Sustainability: Alcoa Foundation ProgramServes as Catalyst for Greater International Collaboration for Universities
A New Frontier in China for the University of Montana
The View from Vietnam: Perceptions of Prospective
When Meaningful Partnerships Work: Developing World-Class Indonesian Geoscientists
Rising Demand from Southeast Asian Professionals for Tertiary Executive Education Programs: When Quality Matters
IIE Program Profile
IIE Networker - Spring 2010