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Speech By Professor Cheong Hee Kiat At The MOU Signing - SIM University And SAF At SAFTI

Speech By Professor Cheong Hee Kiat, President Of SIM University At The Memorandum Of Understanding Signing Ceremony Between SIM University And The Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) On 27 February 2009 At The SAFTI Military Institute

Lieutenant General Desmond Kuek, Chief of Defence Force;
SAF Officers;
Distinguished guests;
Ladies and gentlemen;


  1. These are challenging time for all of us. The global economic downturn, the industry restructuring, significant workforce displacements and the intense effort by our government to create jobs, serve to highlight the importance of seeking continuous professional development to remain competitive and relevant. This is where UniSIM has been, and can be playing, a major role.

  1. Since 1991, UniSIM has been reaching out to the diversity of adult learners to meet their various needs - from working professionals to senior executives for career enhancement and knowledge upgrading, from homemakers to retirees who want an opportunity to study in a discipline of their choice and interest. UniSIM, as Singapore’s first and only privately-funded university, exists to meet these continuing education needs.

  1. My colleagues and I are delighted to be here as this MOU establishes a strategic relationship of commitment and collaboration in continuing education between SAF and UniSIM to develop SAF personnel professionally and academically. This relationship is founded on UniSIM’s flexible mode and modular programmes that are designed for demanding schedules and yet ensure a fine balance between studies with career, family and social responsibilities. This is very suitable for SAF personnel who need to continuously align academic pursuit with SAF’s operational needs.

  1. This unique feature of UniSIM’s programmes has also been instrumental in UniSIM’s other collaborations with Singapore public sector partners to offer various upgrading opportunities for their staff. The collaboration with SAF is however by far the largest in scale and potential development.


  1. Already, our programmes are serving SAF personnel - our record shows that about 480 SAF personnel have been enrolled in our programmes since January 2005. But, I see the partnership also in terms of the sharing of experience and knowledge resources that is possible. UniSIM offers knowledge and expertise in a wide range of disciplines and is ready to develop new expertise and capability to meet the needs of our partners. As an ex-NSman (logistics), I am keenly aware that within the SAF lie a wide array of high-level capabilities – as a fighting machine (thankfully for Singapore) and in logistics, technology, innovation, IT, resource management, strategy, you name it.


  1. In view of this, the MOU to be signed today between UniSIM and SAF will provide a useful platform to explore further opportunities for our faculty and SAF Officers to collaborate, to expand and evolve the opportunities for Continuing Education of SAF personnel. This will fulfil the University’s goal of providing continuing education to all working professionals to enable them to achieve self-fulfilment and realize their full potential.

  1. Thank You.
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