Dr Chong Yoke Sin

NUS Alumna inspires female talents in STEM through bursary.

Dr Chong Yoke Sin (’78) calls NUS the “University of Opportunity”. Growing up in a family with financial challenges, she had the fiery drive to succeed in life — and she did. Aided by student grants, she completed her Science degree and PhD at the University. She went on to blaze trails in the tech industry and community and is now a managing partner at a top venture capital firm, iGlobe Partners.

Now, the alumna is determined to help those in need write their success story. She regularly contributes to her alma mater and her latest gift is to establish the STEM Inspire Bursary. The letters in "Inspire" stands for Information, Network, Science, Perseverance, Innovation, Research/Resilience and Empathy. The fund supports female students in the disciplines of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) — where women are still underrepresented.

“During my school days, I had to give tuition to make ends meet. I would like to help students in the same circumstances similar to mine during my undergraduate days. I hope the Bursary allows the recipient to focus on her studies and make the best out of the time she has at the University,” shared Dr Chong.

The effect of a single act of kindness can ripple through generations. As a financially strapped student, Dr Chong could fully immerse herself in her studies because of these generous gifts — the Class of 1979 Bursary and the NUS Research Scholarship. Today, placed in a position to help others, Dr Chong is paying it forward with financial and moral support.

A mentor can make a real difference to a person starting out in life. Besides setting up the Bursary, Dr Chong is offering to take young fellows under her wings, as she was once in their shoes. During her time at NUS, her confidence was shaped under the guidance of nurturing mentors, Dr Lawrence Chia and Mrs Tan Chee Kiow.

“I came from a humble family and had to struggle through to attain the milestones achieved. I certainly appreciate the support that came from various people I met along the way. Nothing should stand in the way of others who want to achieve their dreams. I hope this gift will empower fellow women to achieve their dreams confidently, knowing that there is support from people unknown to her, but who care about her,” said Dr Chong, sharing her hopes that the STEM Inspire Bursary will uplift young women and enable them to excel in their respective fields.