Nee Soon East launches new bursary to help private university students

Private university students living in Nee Soon East will have a new way to help pay for their studies from next year.

The first of its kind Nee Soon East Tertiary Award, set up and funded by the local citizens' consultative committee, will support Singapore citizens who are full-time university students at private institutions here like MDIS and SIM Global. This was announced by Nee Soon MP Patrick Tay at a ceremony on Saturday at Nee Soon East Community Club in Yishun to hand out Edusave awards.

At the ceremony, 1,504 students from primary and secondary schools, junior colleges and public universities received $504,900 worth of merit bursaries and other awards.

The new tertiary bursary was set up in response to residents' feedback about the financial costs of local private universities, Mr Tay said.

"We want to make sure that anyone who wants to pursue a quality education will be able to do so with the encouragement of his or her community," Mr Tay said in a speech.

Up to 10 students will each receive about $3,000 from a $30,000 kitty. Details and criteria are still being firmed up but applications will open next June, and more funds may be raised depending on demand, he added.

Miss Janice Lim, 20, plans to apply. The SIM Global student is pursuing an external degree in business from the University of London and is not eligible for government subsidies. Currently, an uncle helps out with tuition costs, said the daughter of a housewife and an electrical technician.

"Any form of financial help will be beneficial," she said.