By Stephane Cheung, Foundation Programmes Office
Distinguished Alumni Award
Dr Vilma D’Rozario, Sub-Dean of Student Counselling and Liaison and Associate Professor with the Psychological Studies Academic Group has been conferred the Distinguished International Alumni Award 2010 from the College of Education and Human Development (CEHD) at the University of Minnesota.
The Distinguished International Alumni Award recognises international alumni from CEHD who have made significant contributions to the field of education and human development in their own country. In this respect, Dr D’Rozario was recognised for her pioneering efforts in the fields of guidance, counselling and leadership in service-learning.
Dr D’Rozario holds a PhD in Educational Psychology with a specialisation in Counselling Psychology from the University of Minnesota and has research interests in service learning, master therapists, counsellor education and group counselling. Besides helping student teachers in need at NIE, she is also instrumental in empowering students to become involved in student clubs and international service learning projects. As a nature lover and activist, she volunteers extensively in environmental education and wildlife conservation projects in Singapore.
Dr D’Rozario was also awarded the Nanyang Award for Service in 2006.
Lee Kong Chian Research Fellowship
Dr Noel Chia Kok Hwee, an assistant professor with the Early Childhood & Special Needs Education Academic Group, was awarded the Lee Kong Chian (LKC) Research Fellowship on 12 January 2010. Dr Chia was one of the three recipients of this Fellowship.
The LKC Research Fellowship is established to encourage research into various aspects of Asian content namely its culture, economy and heritage. This is primarily to enrich the strong Asia-centric collections and resources of the Lee Kong Chian Reference Library at the National Library, Singapore.
Dr Noel Chia’s research topic is “A Survey on the Growth of Imagination in Children’s English Literature in Singapore: 1965 - 2005.” On his thoughts about winning the LKC Research Fellowship, Dr Chia says, “I spend most of my free time reading and writing not only academic papers but also stories and poems for children. Together with my daughter, Grace, I love creating imaginary tales along the line of fantasy and science fiction … I have always been passionate about promoting Singapore children’s literature in English. Here I am … on this Lee Kong Chian Research Fellowship to research on the topic closest to my heart: imagination in children’s literature.”
Dr Chia is also the first Singaporean to become a board-certified educational therapist registered with the Association of Educational Therapists, United States, as well as a board-certified special education professional registered with the American Academy of Special Education Professionals. He is also a registered professional counsellor with the Australian Institute of Professional Counsellors.