I applaud the Ministry of Education for offering generous scholarships to Asean students.
I have encountered many such students during my school days. There are even targeted cram schools to mould potential applicants.
While a few of these scholars have stayed and continued to contribute to Singapore when they conclude their term, most have moved on to elsewhere.
I have come across online sources which say that while many female scholars take up permanent residency here when offered, the majority of the males reject this, as they would have to serve national service.
Is there a better way for these scholarship holders to contribute to Singapore's future?
How can these scholarships be refashioned to attract those who are outstanding and willing to commit to contributing to Singapore?
Perhaps mandatory enrolment into the National Cadet Corps as a co-curricular activity for male scholarship recipients may be something to consider.
Or perhaps these scholarships should not be bond-free.
Cheng Ching Siang