A Willing Heart Learns Better: James Eu
The Singapore University of Social Sciences (SUSS) provides a learner-centric education that promotes lifelong learning, and develops students that are industry-ready. Backed by its rich heritage (the university was established in 1992), the curriculum is undoubtedly sound and relevant to the needs of the economy. However, what sets SUSS apart is their focus on creating social awareness of the needs of the society.
Collectively, SUSS is centred on its 3H's education philosophy: 'Head' for professional competency with applied knowledge, 'Heart' for social awareness of the needs of the society, and 'Habit' for passion towards lifelong learning.
BrightSparks spoke to 25-year-old student with willing heart, James Eu, who humbly shares his learning journey at SUSS, and how he is looking to influence the society positively.
The Next Leap Forward
The SUSS learning journey helps students go the distance in their career goals. The curriculum has also shaped their mental maturity, and their ability to think out of the box and be more aware of social issues.
Explains James, who is pursuing a degree in Early Childhood Education with Minor in Psychology: "I love the modules in SUSS and I have grown a lot academically. We have a component called Service-Learning and Community Engagement, in which we have to engage a community partner and volunteer for 1.5 years.
"I started a group called Project Colours, where 14 other volunteers and I went to help out at a special education school in Singapore. As a project leader, I had to go over to the school and discuss what we can do for them. The experience in SUSS service learning has helped me to gain a wider perspective in terms of the community working with children."
This journey will definitely help James in his career in early childhood education.
"I enjoy working with children and their families. Seeing the children improve their skills over time really reminds me that I am making a difference in their lives," he explains. Apart from classroom discussions, the hands-on experience offered by SUSS has been an invaluable one for James.
"SUSS is certainly going the extra mile to prepare me for my career. We have practicum every term, in which we will be posted to a kindergarten or childcare to practice what we learn in our module. We even have assignments that involve us to observe or conduct an activity with the children, and then we reflect about it.
"Recently, I just completed my teaching practice, which is a three-month practicum programme at a childcare centre. I felt better prepared in my career, as my form teacher and supervisor all helped to correct me and give me a lot of useful advice on how to improve myself such as my tone, posture and body language."
He whole-heartedly endorses SUSS for its high academic standards, and how the university has shaped his mind and soul.
He says: "SUSS has very high standards when it comes to grading or marking, and the professors here are very experienced in teaching. Most definitely, it is not a 'second-choice university'."
This article was first published in BrightSparks 2020 Vol. 1 eMagazine. Republished with permission from CareerBuilder Singapore.