President Halimah attends NUS commencement

President Halimah Yacob shares a photo with Professor Simon Chesterman, dean of NUS Faculty of Law. About 360 law graduates were conferred their degrees at the ceremony yesterday. The ceremony was Madam Halimah's first since she became the university
President Halimah Yacob shares a photo with Professor Simon Chesterman, dean of NUS Faculty of Law. About 360 law graduates were conferred their degrees at the ceremony yesterday. The ceremony was Madam Halimah's first since she became the university's 10th chancellor last November.ST PHOTO: SYAMIL SAPARI

It was a homecoming of sorts for President Halimah Yacob, as she attended the National University of Singapore (NUS) law school's commencement ceremony yesterday.

The ceremony was her first since she became the university's 10th chancellor last November.

Madam Halimah graduated from the NUS Faculty of Law in 1978. She was back there again in 1999, and earned her master's in law in 2001.

About 360 law graduates were conferred their degrees at the ceremony. Yesterday's event kicks off the first of 23 commencement ceremonies being held at the University Cultural Centre over eight days. A total of 6,785 students will receive their bachelor's while 4,082 will be conferred postgraduate degrees.

Yesterday, NUS president Tan Eng Chye told the law graduates that apart from their legal training, other attributes such as curiosity, empathy and determination would be needed for them to succeed in the field.

"You will also need to constantly seek out new knowledge, to enlarge and enrich your understanding, and to discover new and different ways of doing things," he said.

In his speech, Prof Tan also paid tribute to Justice Chao Hick Tin, Senior Judge of the Supreme Court of Singapore, for his contributions.

Justice Chao, 75, was presented an honorary Doctor of Laws, the university's highest honour, by Madam Halimah.

Prof Tan said Justice Chao had, over a career that has stretched more than 50 years so far, held some of the highest legal offices, including that of attorney-general and Supreme Court judge of appeal.

"His expertise in international law, as well as his resolute spirit of public service, was called upon in landmark agreements and treaties that secured and promoted Singapore's sovereignty, territorial integrity, and commercial interests," said the NUS president.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 13, 2018, with the headline 'President Halimah attends NUS commencement'. Print Edition | Subscribe