20th Anniversary Reunion Dinner, Graduates of 1995 to 1997
DBS Alumni 20th Anniversary Reunion Dinner (10 March)
On the 20th anniversary of the founding of Biological Sciences from the merger of the Departments of Botany and Zoology, DBS celebrated by inviting the classes of 1995-1997 to an inaugural alumni reunion dinner on the 10th of March 2017 at the NUSS Guild House. In the weeks leading to the event we were busy reaching out to the alumni by email and Facebook and updating their contact details. The organizers were very excited to launch the first of such department-based alumni events. This excitement was matched by the alumni who helped spread the word to their friends and classmates. We gathered 49 alumni and 10 former faculty at the event, many of whom haven’t seen each other since their college days. The night was full of excitement and there was non-stop chats and laughter among the alumni and faculty.
The MC, Senior Lecturer Sivasothi (AKA “Otterman”) created an atmosphere of back-to-school days. Testimonials were delivered by our veteran professors, Alex Ip and Tan Teck Koon, who recounted some of their wonderful memories with the students. Also a few alumni who came forward to share their memories and jokes. With the success of the reunion dinner, the department will follow up to invite the alums to visit our classrooms and labs in Alumni Science Events as well as plan alumni dinner reunions for the Botany and Zoology cohorts.
‘First batch of students of the Department of Biological Sciences NUS (96/97). Can’t believe that 20 years had passed since I left NUS. A million thanks to this bunch of crazy people who kept my 4 years in NUS so memorable. It was good to see some of you after so long.
To Prof. Yeoh Hock Hin, wherever you are, thank you for your guidance.
God bless each one of you now and always.’
Quotes from Dr Koh Tong-Wey (faculty):
‘Thank you DBS people for the wonderful reunion evening’
Quotes from Ms Jacqueline Lim (alumni):
‘Time stands testament to our friendship… re-connecting with long lost classmates and well-respected professors at NUS alumnus event last night. A toast to another 20 years of friendship!’
Quotes from Mr Eric Lam (alumni):
‘It was a great event. Thanks for inviting me and wife. It was wonderful meeting with all the professors after all these years! Would love to come back more often to such gatherings and help out where we can to inspire the younger ones!’
Quotes from Prof Ding Jeak Ling (faculty):
‘…it was a very pleasant evening, celebrating the homecoming of our senior colleagues, welcoming back our alumni (year of 1995- 1997), and reminiscing the past with the present. It was very heartwarming to note how successful our graduates are….’
Quotes from Prof Wong Sek Man (faculty):
‘Teaching is rewarding’. During the reunion dinner, a few alumni and teaching staff shared their past experiences in the former Departments. The story from Adrian Loo on how he was inspired by a slide shown during Hugh Tan’s lecture that made him decided to become a researcher in Botany. Although Hugh Tan was not present at the dinner, I am sure he would feel gratified that he had inspired someone in the next generation to share the same passion and to pursue a career in the same field of study. The story from Tan Teck Koon on his special notebook which collected the appreciation given by his past students was very touching and admirable. It all shows that teaching is not only fun, but also highly rewarding!
Quotes from A/P Tan Teck Koon (faculty):
“Teaching is more than just covering academic grounds …it is also about forging a relationship (with students) that influences values and hones skillsets necessary in life.
Thus, it was such a joy to meet up with our former students who are now doing well professionally, enjoying life and for some, bringing up children of their own! While listening to their reminiscences of their happy student days brought back warm memories, I couldn’t help feeling a tint of patriarchal pride in seeing how they have bloomed.”
Quotes from Prof Prakash Kumar (faculty):
‘The reunion gathering was a wonderful opportunity to catch up with the former students who are pursuing various careers and our senior colleagues. I hope that we will have such gatherings regularly to renew the bond between the alumni and our department.’
Quotes from Prof Alex Ip (faculty):
‘This homecoming event served as an important platform to reconnect old friends, to build network, and to update our alumni with new developments in our department. More importantly, it was a very happy moment of reunion with reminiscence into the past. I got a chance to meet up with not only former students but also senior colleagues who had retired earlier. Together, we took a trip down the memory lane to nostalgia. We fervently searched for memories of the past, exchanged tales of the present, and laughed as our stories flowed. There was something therapeutic about reminiscing and laughing, and laughter was simply good for our soul. Although the reunion lasted only several hours, the memory of friendship shared between us was a great treasure, and I look forward to participating in the next reunion event.’