Homecoming Dinner 2018: Speech by Mr Frederick Yeo, Principal of RI

News | 27 July 2018 Views: 82

ADDRESS BY RI PRINCIPAL MR FREDERICK YEO AT THE RAFFLES INSTITUTION HOMECOMING DINNER ON 21 JULY 2018 AT THE RESORTS WORLD SENTOSA WEST BALLROOM

A very good evening to :

Our Guest-of-Honour, NUS University Professor Lim Pin

Mr Choo Chiau Beng, Chairman, RI Board of Governors

Members of RI Board of Governors  

Mrs Poh Mun See, Principal RGS

Mr Dennis Foo, President of the Old Rafflesians’ Association

All Past ORA Presidents

Distinguished Guests, Colleagues and Fellow Rafflesians

 

We are most pleased to welcome everyone to the RI Homecoming and 95th ORA Anniversary dinner gathering.  I hope you enjoyed the exhibitions on display at the foyer and the vicarious stroll down memory lane with your old friends and buddies.

I would also like to extend our warmest congratulations to Professor Lim on receiving the Gryphon Award tonight, in recognition of his extraordinary and outstanding contributions to Singapore.  Mr Magendiran, Senior Deputy Principal, will present Prof Lim’s citation.

195 years on, RI has gone through some key transformations –

  • We moved campus several times, to its present Bishan campus in 1990 (many of you would have studied on the nostalgic grounds of Bras Basah and Grange Road);
  • Raffles Junior College was established in 1982;
  • RI turned independent in 1990, and subsequently started the Integrated Programme in 2004; and
  • RI integrated with RJC as RI Year 1-6 in 2009.

Regardless of these changes, our one constant has been RI’s, and Rafflesians’, mission and commitment in bearing the Hope of a Better Age for Singapore.

Mr Frederick Yeo, Principal of RI, wholeheartedly rallying alumni to come together to continue to support their alma mater.

As the premier school of choice in Singapore, we continue to ensure that we admit all deserving students, that no deserving student should be deterred from enrolling in RI just because of financial difficulties.

In this regard, our donors, many of whom are our Alumni seated in the ballroom tonight, have played a significant role in ensuring the accessibility of RI to financially needy students through the Raffles Scholarship.  We have been able to expand our Primary 5 and 6 scholarships from 23 in 2011, when it was first offered, to 69 this year.  The scholarship is awarded to financially needy Primary 5 and 6 students to spur them on to strive for academic excellence.  While the scholarship is obligation-free, we hope that Primary 6 students who meet our admission criteria, will make RI, and RGS, their school of choice. 

The Raffles Scholarship is also awarded to our current Year 1-6 RI students who require financial support, and to help defray their schooling expenses.  About 200 Rafflesians receive the Raffles Scholarship each year.

On behalf of RI Board of Governors, staff and students, I would like to thank our donors for your generosity in supporting the Raffles Scholarship.  You have made it possible for bright young youths, regardless of their home backgrounds, to access the high-quality holistic education offered by RI and RGS. 

RI remains steadfastly committed to strengthen diversity and to engender inclusiveness of the school community. The Raffles Scholarship is a critical provision that supports our commitment towards this end.

Having been with the school for the past seven months as PRI, I have also heard of, seen and interacted with many Rafflesians on their numerous meaningful and impactful contributions to the larger community outside RI.  They include their involvement in and support for disadvantaged families, the elderly, children, special needs, the environment ... yes, a whole range of social and environmental causes that they feel passionate about.

Going forward, we will share these warm narratives of our students’ contributions more proactively, how they use their exceptional talents and gifts to make our community, and Singapore, a much more cohesive, inclusive and happier place to live in.  In so doing, we hope to expand RI’s mindshare in our community and beyond in a more definitive way – that RI is Singapore’s premier educational institution that develops our bright young minds as values-anchored, service-oriented Thinkers, Leaders and Pioneers for the future.

On a final note, tonight is your night – to catch up with old friends and to reminisce the good old days of RI.  I wish everyone an enjoyable dinner.

Auspicium Melioris Aevi.


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