Mr J Y Pillay is a member of various councils and advisory panels. He serves as a Chairman of the Council of Presidential Advisers, Chairman of Securities Industry Council and the Chancellor of Singapore Management University. He is also a member of the Presidential Council for Minority Rights and Member of the Board of the Financial Information Authority, Vatican City State.
Mr J Y Pillay received his degree from the Imperial College of Science and Technology, University of London in 1956. In the course of his career, Mr J Y Pillay had been in the administrative service of the Government of Singapore from 1961 to 1995, rising to permanent secretary in 1972. He also served in Ministries of Finance, Defence and National Development, as Managing Director of the Monetary Authority of Singapore and the Government of Singapore Investment Corporation. He was also the Chairman of Singapore Exchange Limited and the Chairman of Tiger Airways Holdings Limited.
In the public sector, Mr J Y Pillay held Chairmanship of government companies. He was the Chairman of Development Bank of Singapore from 1979 to 1984, Chairman of Singapore Airlines from 1972 to 1996, Chairman of Temasek Holdings from 1974 to 1986 and Chairman of the Council on Corporate Disclosure and Governance from 2002 to 2007.
After graduating from the NUS medical school in 1988, A/P Adeline Seow chose to take up an academic career and joined the University as a senior tutor in 1990, eventually specializing in public health and epidemiology. She now teaches graduate students in the School of Public Health, and has also taught disease prevention, critical thinking and evidence-based medicine in the Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine. Her research focuses on the causes and prevention of cancer; and a particular area of interest has been in the environmental and genetic factors that lead to lung cancer in non-smoking women. She has also been involved in interdisciplinary research in the area of cancer screening and prevention and has had illuminating and enjoyable experiences working with colleagues from other disciplines. Her hope is that students and faculty will work together to create a College community that is lively, engaged, outward-looking and inspiring.
Adeline and her husband, Richard, have two children – Joanna and Jonathan. Between them, the family enjoys music in various forms, ranging from the classical organ, vocal and choral music to beat-boxing and the electric guitar.
Dr Reuben Wong is Jean Monnet Professor in European Integration and Foreign Policy. He was First Secretary in the Singapore Embassy in Paris (1995-98), earned an M.Phil from Oxford University, then a Ph.D in International Relations from the LSE in 2003. He has written widely on the EU’s foreign policy and relations with ASEAN and China, including “The Europeanization of French Foreign Policy” (Palgrave Macmillan, 2006), and “National and European Foreign Policies” (Routledge, 2011). He has held visiting positions at Cambridge University, the LSE, the Stimson Center (Washington DC), and the East Asia Institute (Singapore). He is also the Liaison Officer for Antonians (St Antony’s College Oxford alumni) in Singapore and Malaysia. Dr Wong speaks French, Chinese and some Spanish. A Fulbright scholar (2009), he serves on the Council of the Singapore Institute of International Affairs (SIIA), is an Associate Fellow at the EU Centre and was a Resident Fellow at Temasek Hall NUS (2005 -2010). He is an active media commentator on politics, and raises four children to help stem the falling Singaporean birth rate.
Teck Keong is a Senior Lecturer at the Department of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Science. He has been coordinating and teaching large classes with enrolments of 350 to 800 students per semester for more than 10 years. The challenges of effectively managing the teaching and learning of not only a large number but also a large diversity of students every semester had motivated Teck Keong to explore the use of technology in education and to investigate the impact of the utilisation of technology on learning. Despite the large enrolments of his classes, Teck Keong seeks to interact with as many of his students as possible and get them enthused about the scientific study of life. This desire of his to leave a lasting and positive impact on the lives of his students is also seen in the many long-lasting friendships forged with the residents of King Edward VII Hall during his many years of service as a Resident Fellow there.
Upon graduation from NUS in 1985, Dr TanLai Yong worked as a doctor in Singapore. In 1996, he and his wife, and one year old daughter moved to Yunnan, China, and joined a community development team, working with the poverty affected in remote villages, caring for orphans, disabled children and leprosy affected.In his 15 years on Yunnan, he had to cycle about 30 km daily, create innovative ways to teach health and hygiene to the different Minority Ethnic groups and villages, plan for “surgery camps” for cleft palate babies and other disabled people, and also initiated tree planting (eg walnut) efforts that led to thousands of trees being planted to help raise farm income and also reduce soil erosion.As part of the China National Day celebrations in 2004, Lai Yong was given the Friendship Award for Foreign Experts at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, an event that was graced by Premier Wen Jia Bao. Lai Yong was also given the Singapore International Foundation (SIF Award) presented by Mr. Lee Hsien Loong and the 2005 Singapore MILK Fund (Mainly I Love Kids) Award for Outstanding Youth and Children’s Worker by President Nathan. In 2007, the Yunnan Provincial TV Station ran a series on people in Yunnan and the viewers voted Dr Tan Lai Yong as one of the “Good Citizens of Kunming”（昆明好人）Lai Yong has written several books and his first book, “Biting the Bamboo” – Experiences of Work and Life in Yunnan, is in its 5th printing. He also wrote the book , “Two Ears But Only One Mouth – Reflections on Wisdom in Rural Yunnan” and “Pilgrims” – A Photo journal of life in a Dai Village in Xishuangbanna ( a joint publication with photographer Andrew Chew). He is married to Lay Chin and has 2 teenage children.
Daniel Jew received his BA in Classical studies, and MPhil and doctorate in Ancient History, from Trinity College, Cambridge University. He became fascinated there with investigating the impact of Greek culture on critical thought, ideas of citizenship, subordinated classes (“subalterns”), and the ancient economy. Daniel has taught in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences and the University Scholars Programme at NUS, and at Monash University. He was formerly the Moses and Mary Finley Research Fellow at Darwin College Cambridge, and is excited to draw on his experience of rich college life overseas to serve as a CAPT Fellow. Outside of teaching and research, Daniel is an avid board game player, and hopes that his young twins might one day play with him.
Ms Wong Soon Fen is a lifelong learner who began her education journey outdoors as a child where hours were spent playing with friends from the neighbouring ‘kampongs’ before her first formal education in the now defunct Cambridge Primary School. The journey continued in different schools and culminated at NUS where she spent four years playing (and learning!) at Kent Ridge Hall while majoring in English Language and Sociology, and received her BA (Hons) in English Language. It took on a few different tracks as she traversed across the playgrounds at the College of Physical Education, Raffles Girls’ School, Shree Panch Ratna Rajya Laxmi Girls’ High School (Nepal) and Southeast East Asian Ministry of Education Organisation (SEAMEO) Regional Language Centre (RELC), and along the way, picked up an MSc in Applied Linguistics at the University of Edinburgh before her current stop at NUS. Since joining NUS at the Centre for English Language Communication (CELC) in 2007 and CAPT (formerly Angsana College) in 2012, she has taught and learnt from undergraduates and postgraduates from different schools – Business, Arts and Social Sciences, Computing, Science, Medicine, Music, and Design and Environment. As a student, teacher, teacher trainer, project manager and mentor at the different stations, Soon Fen has had the privilege of interacting with the beautiful peoples in Botswana, Cambodia, India, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Nepal, Philippines, Thailand, Timor Leste and Vietnam. This ongoing learning journey has given her research opportunities in language teaching, teacher education, pedagogy, collaborative learning, intercultural communication and educational work in developing countries.
Ms Sue Chang-Koh holds a Masters of International Studies from the University of Sydney, Australia. Depending on the semester, Sue teaches the module Family in a Changing Singapore (UTC1415) and co-lectures Hidden Communities (UTC1403) and Understanding Health Behaviour (UTC1405). She is also the Associate Director for Outreach and Community Engagement, the Fellow-in-charge of Financial Aid, and CAPT Grants. With a banking background, Sue has also involved herself in various schools and charities over the years and is also a judge at the annual Singapore National Odyssey of the Mind Competition, a creativity problem solving competition for children and youth. A strong supporter of field trips and learning outside the classroom, Sues enjoys engaging with students, community partners and institutions. She aspires to impart her skills and life experience to the students. Above all, she is keen to foster a community that learns, engages, and has a lasting impact on its members. Sue is married and has three university aged kids. Her family enjoys movies, television, and sports. Sometimes, dinner-table conversation revolves around the politics of Westeros and the hit reality television series, Survivor, for which she has a passion.
Siok Kuan Tambyah (Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison) is an Associate Professor in Marketing at the NUS Business School, National University of Singapore. As a child, Siok thought she would grow up to be a/an actress, entrepreneur, teacher or writer. Being an academic has enabled her to realize all these dreams and more. Siok’s research and teaching interests are consumption and identity (e.g., ethnicity and gender), consumer culture, happiness, values and lifestyles, luxury consumption, and cross-cultural consumer behavior. Siok is most happy when exploring new ideas, and new places in Singapore and around the world. She enjoys organizing get-togethers and helping to connect like-minded people. Her other interests include singing, doing consumer research through shopping, attending cultural events and watching sports.
Dr Alberto Corrias believes in encouraging students to develop critical thinking, to ask how and why things work, and to go beyond just mastering technical skills. He is currently teaching several courses in the field of Biomedical Engineering, with topics that include the design of medical devices, data analysis and computational techniques as applied to biomechanics problems. His research interests lie in the area of applying engineering principles to the biomedical sciences. In particular, he is interested in the use of computational techniques to make sense of the vast amount of experimental and clinical data that are continuously being produced in the fields of cardiology and gastroenterology. Alberto obtained a 5-year degree in Biomedical Engineering from Politecnico di Milano Technical University (Milan, Italy) before working for two years in the pharmaceutical industry (AstraZeneca). In 2008, he received a PhD in Bioengineering from the National University of Singapore. He then joined Oxford University (UK) as a post-doctoral fellow for a period of two years before returning to NUS to work as a lecturer. Besides a nice dinner with his wife, he enjoys football, swimming and a good game of chess.
Dr Anne Raffin, a French national, received her PhD in Sociology and Historical Studies at the New School for Social Research, USA. She benefited from a multi-disciplinary education which allowed her to explore various social issues from complementary angles. Before becoming a graduate student, she was a volunteer worker for a year and a half in a shelter for women in New York City where she learnt valuable lessons thanks to such hands-on engagement in civil society. She hopes that students would benefit from similar opportunities offered by the College of Alice & Peter Tan: crossing boundaries between disciplines and between college and community engagement. Dr. Raffin’s research centers on a range of topics. The most recent one is on identity, rights and how to foster peaceful relations within a diverse population from an historical perspective. A book manuscript entitled “Who belongs to my community? Cultural Particularism vs. the Universal Nation in French Colonial Pondicherry, 1870s-1914” and related to the above theme is in progress. In the past she has written on colonial and contemporary Vietnam.
Dr Lockhart‘s teaching and research focuses on the countries of mainland Southeast Asia, particularly Vietnam, Thailand, and Laos – the three places he lived in before moving to Singapore. He has been especially interested in the topic of kings and monarchy, but he is now spending more and more time thinking about how these countries perceive and write their own history as well. His current research project is a history of the modern Thai monarchy, and once that is completed he plans to go back to writing on Vietnam. Dr Lockhart’s teaching interests focus on Southeast Asia, as well as a module on the history of Christianity. He particularly enjoys teaching the history of culture and religion, including lots of myths and stories to make history come alive. He also spends a lot of time talking to students, and both mentoring and pastoral care are very important in his life at NUS.
After spending many years as a professional bassist, A/P Greg Petersen left the musical performance venues of the world and entered the universities of the world to focus on his academic interests in the human relationship with arts. Today he is a scholar weaving together his disparate background and interests. Because of his interdisciplinarity, he has taught a broad spectrum of interdisciplinary humanities courses. Some of the world’s most respected publishers publish his book chapters and journals articles in the areas of musical instrument history, aesthetics, and economic, religious and political influences on the arts and society. His conference papers explore questions of emptiness in creativity and how the arts influence personal and national identity. His two monograph-length research studies focus on the images, artefacts and traditions surrounding violin and viola family bridge locations and another on the dawn and demise of musical instruments.As a bassist A/P Petersen performed on several records and film scores, including motion pictures for Walt Disney Pictures and Warner Bros. He has also played bass live with several international artists, Broadway musicals, ice shows, circuses, opera and ballet companies.
Dr Kankana Mukhopadhyay completed her PhD in Education & Human Development from the Warner School at the University of Rochester. The multidisciplinary approach of the Human Development program at Warner School greatly benefitted her in pursuing her research in understanding the social construction of identity by women, who play multiple roles everyday in the work place, family and community. Prior to her graduate studies she worked as a researcher in an UNESCO educational project for women conducted in a rural village in India. She was intrigued to observe how community involvement could be both empowering and disempowering for women who are challenged with complex negotiations of everyday roles, and was thus motivated to pursue these issues in her own research.Apart from identity theories, her research interests also lie in social research methodologies and different modes of inquiry. As Adjunct Instructor at Warner School she taught several research methods courses, enabling students to gain a firm understanding of different research paradigms and how to determine research designs and choice of methodologies – quantitative, qualitative and mixed methods. During her graduate program she also completed a certificate in program evaluation and has taught courses on both program evaluation theory and practice.
After earning his PhD in political science at the University of Wisconsin in 2008, Kevin McGahan served as a post-doctoral fellow at the National University of Singapore (NUS). He is currently a lecturer in the department of political science at NUS, where he conducts research in international relations and comparative politics. He has taught both graduate and undergraduate classes, ranging from international law to global migration to Southeast Asian politics. His main research agenda involves examining state and societal responses to transnational migration in Southeast Asia, particularly in Malaysia and Thailand. Another broad area of focus centers on the role of states and nonstate actors in various issues of global governance, such as transnational migration, human rights, and maritime piracy. In addition to his research interests, McGahan has practical experience in working for government agencies, political consultancies, and non-governmental organizations, including serving as an international election observer in Timor-Leste. To relieve stress, he mountain bikes, skis and runs as well as competes in several endurance races for charities.
Dr Joelle Lai Chiu Yun (赖秋云) received her doctoral degree from the National University of Singapore, specialising in the population genetics of the blue flower crab. She is a museum officer with the Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum where she is responsible for public outreach and education, and volunteer engagement, amongst other things. Her research interests revolves around crabs – cryptic species, sibling species, crab phylogeny, crab taxonomy and systematics, and marine biogeography using crustacean models. Joelle previously taught Environmental Biology (GEK1515) and took students on field trips to understand Singapore’s green and brown footprint, as well as the impact of marine debris on Singapore’s coastline. The nicest place she visited in the last year was Luang Prabang (Laos DPR) and she hopes kick back with a book and coffee by the Mekong River again soon.
Dr Lee Soo Ann is a retired professor of economics and business policy from NUS who is still teaching. Many decades in NUS has kept him young in heart which is why he has volunteered to be a fellow of CAPT where he teaches a junior seminar on “Debating Singapore social and Economic History”. Due to his seniority, he has seen Singapore change from a British colony to full internal self-rule to being part of Malaysia and to being an independent republic. His seminar sees these and earlier changes from more than one perspective, so as to inculcate the art of critical thinking which he considers important in university education. He also brings to CAPT his experience in being master of two residential halls and being head of a department and the faculty of accountancy and business administration. He has three children, the youngest of whom is 16. He is married to a former colleague in the Department of Economics.
Dr Linda Matar received her PhD in Economics from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS). She is currently a senior research fellow at NUS’s Middle East Institute. Her research involves the economics of the Arab region with particular emphasis on Syria. Since joining NUS, she has lectured on the development challenges facing the Middle East. Although trained as an economist, her research and teaching approaches have been interdisciplinary drawing on a variety of academic disciplines to present her argument and engage her audience. She invites students to think critically and to explore contemporary issues from a variety of angles. More recently, she has researched the politics and the economics of the Arab Spring. She is the author of The Political Economy of Investment in Syria (Palgrave Macmillan, 2016).
Dr Theresa Tan is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Biochemistry, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine. She had worked as a post-doctoral research fellow in the University of Dundee (Scotland) and the Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology (Singapore) before joining NUS as a faculty member in 1998. She has a strong interest in fuel metabolism and nutrition which constitutes a considerable part of her undergraduate teaching to the medical, dental and science students.Her research interest is on liver diseases. Past and current work includes hepatitis B infections, fatty liver and non-alcoholic steatohepatitis, liver cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. To date she has co-authored more than 40 research papers in international journals. The long-term goal of her research is to understand the role of small regulatory RNA molecules called microRNAs in liver diseases.
Dr Yasmin Ortiga received her doctorate in Sociology from Syracuse University and her master’s in Education at Harvard University. Originally from the Philippines, Yasmin considers herself a “scholar of the sending country,” having grown up in a place where international migration is seen as a natural part of life. Her early research investigated how Philippine higher education institutions attempt to produce workers for “export,” altering curriculum and school structures in an effort to educate students for foreign employers. She focused on the experiences of students and educators in Nursing and Hospitality Management, two programs linked to perceived labor demands overseas. Before joining CAPT, she was part of an NTU research team that studied the mobility of foreign and returnee scholars in Singapore. Yasmin enjoys teaching classes on multiculturalism, migration, work, and educational foundations. When she gets away from being an academic, Yasmin illustrates cartoons and reads food blogs for fun.
Ms Angie Tan started her volunteering journey 15 years ago and was given the opportunity to work on various types of projects across countries. She soon focused on working with the special needs community and picked up Sign Language. She is now fluent in both Singapore (SgSL) and Chinese Sign Language (CSL).
She obtained her Bachelor Degree in Commerce from Curtin University, Australia, and subsequently gained teaching experience in China where she taught business subjects. Her genuine interest in community development led her to engage in a Singaporean NGO full time. She set up orphanages and organized community development programmes in Thailand and Cambodia by working closely with the government as well as the local communities. She is currently providing curriculum support to the College as a Teaching Assistant.
Dr Thang Leng Leng is an anthropologist graduated from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with research and teaching interests on Japanese society and culture, aging, gender, intergenerational relationships and programs. She has embarked on fieldwork ranging from the studying of old and young relationships in an age-integrated institution in Tokyo, volunteering among Japanese seniors after the Kobe earthquake, migration of Japanese women to Australia and Southeast Asia. Recently, she also works on different aspects of aging in Singapore, including issues relating to grandparenthood, caregiving, seniors living alone, well-being of seniors and lifelong learning.As someone who believes that intergenerational solidarity (IGS) is necessary for a better society, she is active in promoting IGS. She is co-editor-in-chief of the “Journal of Intergenerational Relationships” (Taylor and Francies) and vice Chair of the International Consortium for Intergenerational Programmes (ICIP). She also provides consultancy on intergenerational programs and currently serves on the council of Families for Life (Ministry of Social and Family Development), and as Chairperson of Singapore Fei Yue Family Service Centre, a voluntary welfare organization active in aging, family and intergenerational programs, among others. She is head of the Department of Japanese Studies and teaches modules examining social-cultural issues in Japan. In addition, she also sometimes offer special modules such as FASS freshmen seminar titled “Generations” and also a module on service learning. In both modules, students experience service learning through the organisation of social events to promote intergenerational understanding.
Dr. Toh Tai Chong is a marine biologist and he has worked on tropical coral reef systems since 2010. He received his BSc in Biological Sciences from Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and completed his PhD in Life Sciences from National University of Singapore (NUS). His research centres on coral reef conservation and restoration by utilizing a multi-disciplinary approach. To date, he has authored over 18 scientific publications and he hopes his academic contributions will facilitate the implementation of conservation projects worldwide. He is currently a lecturer in CAPT and holds a joint position as a post-doctoral research fellow with the Tropical Marine Science Institute (TMSI), NUS. Through his appointment in TMSI, he has worked extensively with local and overseas high school students to promote environmental education and he has taught undergraduates from various departments in NUS, including Department of Biological Sciences and Bachelor of Environmental Studies. Tai Chong is an advocate for lifelong learning and environmental education, and through his appointment in CAPT, he hopes to share his passion for marine science and Singapore’s natural heritage with the student community. His teaching approach focuses on game- and field-based learning, and he will be incorporating some of these pedagogies in his lessons in CAPT.