Community work holds valuable lessons

Some may find community work an obligation, but I think they are in the minority ("Should schools enforce community work?"; Monday).

Many students would agree with me that community service benefits them in one way or another. Before deeming compulsory community work a bane rather than a boon, let us look at some of the benefits.

As a Singapore Management University student, I find that compulsory community work has allowed us to raise our level of awareness and understanding of those in need. The programmes and activities on offer allow us to volunteer with community partners and provide our service and help to them.

But besides being of service, we also learn many values and gain knowledge from the experience.

Through community service, we pick up essential life skills, such as communication and interpersonal relations - beyond what academic lessons can teach us.

More importantly, through the exposure, we are able to change our perspective towards those in need and become more inclusive and socially responsible individuals who care about the community at large.

Damon Goh Jian Liang

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 02, 2016, with the headline 'Community work holds valuable lessons'. Print Edition | Subscribe