Devoting 62 years to 'second home', Montfort Secondary School

Montfort Secondary School's senior laboratory technician Lim Bak Po, 72, considers the Montfort schools his second home, having spent some 62 years of his life studying and working there.

A student at Montfort for a decade, he later took on a job as a technical support staff member working in the school's science labs, where he has remained for the past 52 years.

Part of Mr Lim's job involves setting up equipment and preparing materials for students to practise on during science practical lessons.

"I have to be precise in my preparations so the students are able to get the same results," he said. "Sometimes, I can spend the whole afternoon just preparing the items."

Ahead of biology practical lessons, for instance, Mr Lim makes regular trips to a nearby supermarket to buy food items such as potatoes and bananas, and returns to school to cut them into smaller pieces.

These food substances are used by the students to test for the presence of simple sugars and starch, among other dietary components.

Besides getting items ready for science classes, he also finds time to interact with the students, share his experiences with them and encourage them when the exams are approaching.

"I often tell them to study hard if they want to get into a good school in future," he said.

Over the years, Mr Lim has seen many generations of Montfortians, as the students are known, come and go. Some have since gone on to serve the country in various arenas, from the public service to multinational corporations.

"I've seen the boys grow up into gentlemen, and I am proud of them," he said.

Mr Lim, whose two sons also studied at the Montfort schools, has no intention of retiring for now.

"If you are happy at a place, you wouldn't want to leave," he said.

Calvin Yang

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 25, 2016, with the headline 'Devoting 62 years to 'second home''. Print Edition | Subscribe