President to scholars: Hold on to values that S'pore was built on
As leaders, President's Scholars must rally fellow citizens to tackle challenges, says Halimah Yacob
In the face of disruptive changes, the new generation of leaders must hold on to what is evergreen - values, character and commitment.
It is through perseverance, determination and foresight that our pioneers built a nation based on meritocracy, integrity and impartiality, said President Halimah Yacob.
"We must never forget or abandon these values," she told the newest batch of President's Scholarship recipients at the award ceremony at the Istana yesterday.
"The challenges will be different, but our values will be what unite us and keep us strong. We must not let the tides of change divide us."
Also present at the ceremony were Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean, Minister for Trade and Industry and Minister-in-charge of the Public Service Chan Chun Sing, Education Minister Ong Ye Kung, Second Minister for Education and Finance Indranee Rajah and Public Service Commission (PSC) chairman Lee Tzu Yang.
President Halimah said the President's Scholars would have to lead Singaporeans to tackle challenges.
"As leaders of tomorrow, you will be responsible for rallying your fellow citizens to work together. To do this, you must remain closely connected to the ground and serve with dedication and humility."
Securing the scholarship and achieving great heights in education or career are not ends in themselves, she said.
"We must expect our best and brightest who have benefited from the system to also contribute more to our society."
This year's five scholarship recipients, all 19, are Mr Stefan Liew Jing Rui from River Valley High School, Mr Alden Tan Ming Yang and Ms Tan Xin Hwee from Raffles Institution, as well as Ms Sharmaine Koh Mingli and Ms Shi Peng Yi Penny from Hwa Chong Institution.
Ms Koh, a Singapore Armed Forces Scholarship recipient, will be reading history and politics at Yale University; Ms Shi urban studies at Stanford University; Ms Tan psychology and philosophy at Oxford University; Mr Tan economics, statistics and data science at Yale University; and Mr Liew liberal arts at Yale-NUS.
Mr Liew and Mr Tan are also recipients of the Singapore Police Force Scholarship.