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Speech By Professor Cheong Hee Kiat, MOU Signing - SIM University and Business China

Speech By Professor Cheong Hee Kiat, President Of SIM University At The Memorandum Of Understanding Signing Ceremony Between SIM University And Business China, 2.00pm On 12 June 2011 At Singapore Press Holdings' News Centre


Minister of State Mr Lee Yi Shyan, Board Director, Business China;
Ms Low Yen Ling, CEO Business China.


  1. First, let me express my thanks to Business China for this opportunity to collaborate and I hope this is the start of a meaningful relationship between Business China and SIM University (UniSIM).

  1. UniSIM has a focused mission of providing degree upgrading opportunities for working adults and adult learners, mandated by the Ministry of Education. We currently have more than 11,000 students - they study while they hold down a regular job. We offer more than 40 degree programmes in a wide range of disciplines, including psychology, communication, languages, social science, infocomm technology and engineering, business, finance, logistics, HRM, early childhood education – practical, relevant to our economy and people's lives – and I believe relevant to Business China's members.

  1. Most of these are conducted in English. But, over the years, we have grown a selection of programmes that have strong Chinese content and use Chinese language in instruction. It is a purposeful provision and outreach to the Chinese-speaking population among us, and we hope, also one that supports the national agenda of understanding, engaging and leveraging China. We started with Chinese Language and Literature, then went on to Translation & Interpretation, then Chinese Education, then Communication. Today, we have 7 such full programmes, which I believe, is the largest cluster in our local universities. In future, we will have modules related to doing business with China, Chinese society, culture.

  1. We want to enlarge access to continuing education. So, we have not only expanded the range of our programmes but also provided a slew of financial sponsorships – to date, we have given out S$1.3 million in scholarships, sponsorships and study awards. We also want to expand the numbers studying about the Chinese language and culture and about China-centric matters, enabling more bilingual and bicultural orientation. These 2 objectives come together nicely in this collaboration. I think it also fits in with Business China's objectives.

  1. The details are given in the handouts; the sponsorships are generous and together with the government's fee subsidy to our students of up to 55%, sponsored Business China’s students pay only about 20% of total fees.

  1. I hope this is only the start – UniSIM can draw on the experience of Business China's members to teach our courses, mentor our students, provide industry exposures, while Business China will have the opportunity to influence continuing education and R&D provisions that are needed by its members. Both sides gain and the business community gains. We are excited about the many possibilities.

  1. Thank you.

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