Eunoia Junior College (EJC) students kicked off their new academic year with a 1km trek from Bishan Active Park to their new campus in Sin Ming Avenue yesterday.
Representatives from the school had started the symbolic 14km relay earlier in the morning, marching from the old Mount Sinai Road campus, located in Ghim Moh, to the new Bishan campus via Rifle Range Road and the Central Catchment Nature Reserve.
At about 10am, they were joined by about 1,000 students, staff and alumni for the last leg of the relay, which saw them walk from Bishan Active Park to the new campus.
Students leading the march held up placards of their respective classes and the group passed through the new campus gates, which were decorated with blue and white balloons. The students then converged on the school field for a flag-raising ceremony to mark the new academic year.
"The excitement and anticipation is akin to how one feels stepping into a new home," said student Le-Anne Ong, 17.
The second-year student said the new campus gives seniors like her a sense of permanence, while also paving the way for juniors and future cohorts to share a sense of identity and belonging.
For Alex Ho, 17, the Bishan campus presents new academic and extra-curricular opportunities. The second-year student, who initiated a dance interest group at EJC, said he is looking forward to the school's new dance studio and outdoor spaces to practise his moves.
"The resources and enriching spaces provided... empower us to take the initiative and be leaders in our future institutions," he said.
The new campus comprises two academic blocks that are 10 and 12 storeys high and a five-storey student activities block to support the junior college's academic, co-curricular and special programmes.
On the roof of the student activities block is an eight-lane track and full-sized field, complete with a spectator gallery. The track and field facilities and indoor sports hall will be available for public use under the dual-use scheme.
Mr Ganison Rajamohan, dean of the college's JC1 level, hopes engagement efforts in Ang Mo Kio and Bishan will help entrench the school's place in the community.
"The Bishan campus is a new place for our students to learn and grow. We want to keep the pioneering spirit burning strong as we continue our growth, while retaining the Eunoia identity we have been shaping over the years," he said.
A student interest group at the college has also taken a proactive step in creating a mobile app that helps students and staff orient themselves in their new location.
EJC started taking in students in 2017 at its interim campus in Mount Sinai Road. The site was previously used by Raffles Junior College.
EJC principal Wong-Cheang Mei Heng said students and staff are grateful for the memories made at the Mount Sinai Road campus but are looking forward to fresh achievements at the new campus.
"We want everyone to feel that the Bishan campus is their home, every bit as beautiful as Mount Sinai and more beautiful with each new cohort," she said.
The campus cost $100 million to build and links the college to Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park.
EJC, which has about 1,250 students, will welcome its fourth cohort of first-year students after the Joint Admissions Exercise this month.