SINGAPORE - National athletes Teong Tzen Wei (swimming) and Sasha Christian (wakeboarding) were named the third and fourth recipients of the Singapore Management University's (SMU) Yip Pin Xiu Scholarship on Monday (March 12).
The bond-free bursary, launched in December 2016, is named after Paralympic champion and SMU social sciences alumna Yip, 26, and is for elite local athletes. Sprinter Shanti Pereira and waterskier Sabelle Kee received the award last year in its inaugural edition.
Teong, 20, shot to prominence in his SEA Games debut last year by winning the 50m freestyle crown in 22.55 seconds, 0.08sec off the national record held by Joseph Schooling.
Christian, 24, is a former Asian champion and a multiple SEA Games gold medallist, including two in Kuala Lumpur last year (women's wakeboard and women's slalom).
Under the scholarship, the duo will each receive a full waiver of tuition fees for four years when they begin school in August, and an allowance of up to $12,000 which can be used for a range of programmes, including overseas exchange courses.
Teong is reading business management, while Christian is pursuing a social sciences degree.
Said Teong: "It became clear that SMU is an obvious choice for me in so many aspects, but to be offered the Yip Pin Xiu Scholarship is indeed an honour."
The freestyle specialist is taking part in the Singapore National Age-Group Swimming Championships later this week (March 14-18), where he is looking to break Schooling's 50m mark.
Christian, meanwhile, is in Chile for a training stint before taking part in the IWWF World Wakeboard Championships in Argentina, which runs from March 18-24.
"I am very excited to be joining SMU this August and look forward to growing holistically as a scholar-athlete, fully immersing myself in a dynamic environment where the world is constantly evolving," she said.