Ngee Ann Kongsi donates $1m to support needy ITE students with their daily necessities

Institute of Technical Education chief executive Low Khah Gek (left) receiving the donation from Mr Jamie Teo, vice-president and chairman of Ngee Ann Kongsi's donation and charity sub-committee. PHOTO: INSTITUTE OF TECHNICAL EDUCATION/FACEBOOK

SINGAPORE - Underprivileged students at the Institute of Technical Education (ITE) will receive more financial help through a $1 million donation, Ngee Ann Kongsi (NAK) announced on Tuesday (Nov 23).

The sum will be distributed over the next five years, starting from 2022, and will benefit about 222 students each year, ITE said.

They will receive a monthly allowance of $150 to help with daily meals, commuting and learning materials.

Applications are open to full-time students in any Nitec or Higher Nitec course whose households have a per capita income of not more than $690, or a combined household income of $2,750 or less.

They must also display good conduct and have a positive attitude towards their studies, ITE said.

ITE and the Teochew social welfare organisation inked the agreement on Tuesday (Nov 23).

Mr Jamie Teo, vice-president and chairman of NAK's donation and charity sub-committee, said the donation is in line with the organisation's efforts to deepen and broaden its support for Singapore's education sector.

He said: "This includes support for more Singaporeans beyond the Teochew community."

This is the third donation NAK has made to ITE, following a similar $1 million donation in 2012 that benefited 450 students.

Since 2018, the top three ITE graduates each year also receive the Ngee Ann Kongsi Gold Medal, which comes with a $6,000 cash award each.

NAK has committed to giving this award till 2027.

Mr Shakthivelan Suvendrum Suppiah, 17, a first-year Higher Nitec student taking a course in cyber and network security, said receiving financial assistance from NAK this year means he does not have to work part-time while studying. He qualified for the programme in October.

He said the money has helped him do "normal things" like getting meals with his friends without having to ask his parents for cash, which is tight in his household. His father works a security guard and his mother is a housewife.

Mr Shakthivelan also plans to set aside about a third of the $150 he receives each month for investment.

He said: "My father just turned 60 and I want to be able to support my parents very soon, so I'm very grateful to NAK and ITE for helping me out like this."

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