How PM changed his venue and put ITE in the limelight
Students and staff of newest ITE campus get big boost, prepare to host their first Rally
At 10pm on a Friday in May, deputy principal Chong Leong Fatt got a call about a hush-hush recce of his ITE campus in Ang Mo Kio as a possible venue for tonight's National Day Rally.
Thrilled, he e-mailed his top management right away.
That call would herald a break from the past as the Rally, the Prime Minister's most important speech of the year, had been held at the University Cultural Centre in Kent Ridge since 2001.
Before that, the venue was the Kallang Theatre from 1986 to 2000, the Singapore Conference Hall from 1983 to 1985 and the former National Theatre from 1966 to 1982.
An honour for school
"He could have done it in the polytechnics or junior colleges, but he decided to do it in ITE. It's an honour for us."
ITE visual communication student JONATHAN LEE, 18, who will be atthe Rally tonight.
Listening for new policies
"I'll be looking out for new policies that concern my future as I hope to ROM when I'm 25 and get a Build-To-Order flat."
ITE community sport and recreation management student NICK KOH, 23, who plans to marry his girlfriend (that's "ROM" - Registry of Marriages) and buy a home with her.
Give students chance to shine
"ITE students have talent. Someone may have a 1.9 GPA, but is the best percussion player I've seen. Some may be shy, but when it comes to music and playing solo, they show their passion. If no one gives them a chance to shine, how can they shine?"
ITE concert band president and French horn player JASON ALFARO, 21, a nursing student. GPA refers to grade point average, where 1 is a pass and 4 is the top grade.
Proud moment for all at ITE
"It's obviously a very proud moment for ITE students and staff. We take in 25 per cent of secondary school leavers who are normally the ones with difficulty getting into polytechnics and junior colleges. We provide them with a great opportunity to continue their education. Having the PM address the whole of Singapore from ITE gives recognition to this group of people who work hard to excel. The teachers in particular are very passionate to try to make a difference."
ITE chairman BOB TAN