“…education and farming share a very strong parallel — they involve the process of nurturing and the goals are to help unleash the potential of either a plant or a child.” – Professor Lee Sing Kong
A widely respected academic and passionate educator and horticulturist, Professor Lee Sing Kong passed away on 19 May 2017. Beyond his long list of career achievements, Professor Lee was known to many of his colleagues and students as a visionary leader with a heart, a selﬂess mentor and a great teacher. In honour of Professor Lee’s contributions towards education and Singapore, the University has launched the Lee Sing Kong Endowment Fund, which will carry on his vision and passion for education by supporting professorships in Early Childhood Education as well as NTU Bursaries for underprivileged students.
At Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore), Professor Lee served in various leadership positions that included Director of National Institute of Education (NIE), Vice President of Education Strategies, Director of the Centre for Research and Development in Learning (CRADLE), and Vice President of Alumni and Advancement.
As a horticulturist, Professor Lee played a leading role in the greening of Singapore. His contributions to the preservation and development of the country’s national parks and greenery helped to realise the late founding Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew’s vision of a Garden City.
Professor Lee had the unerring ability to nurture and grow both teachers and plants. Tapping on innovation and creativity, he was able to define and refine the smallest detail without losing sight of the big picture. However, it was his special blend of truly connecting with people and being able to inspire them to want to push boundaries, to see how the future could be and, to invent solutions to realisedreams that made him the visionary he was.
Within a span of six short years as the Director of NIE, the dynamic Professor Lee built on the strong foundation he inherited and was able to mould NIE into an institution that has ambition, excellence in teaching, performance in useful research, and is a valuable member of the education fraternity.
The Lee Sing Kong Endowment provides bursaries to help under privileged students participate in overseas immersion programmes, so as to enhance the quality education they receive at the University, underscoring NTU’s belief that no deserving student should be denied an education due to ﬁnancial constraints. The Lee Sing Kong Bursary will enable many deserving students to improve their lives through the varied possibilities of learning, self-discovery, and personal growth. This will in turn inspire young minds to create positive changes in their lives and society.
The Lee Sing Kong Professorship in Early Childhood is intended for a visiting professorship at the National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore for outstanding professors of international standing in the ﬁeld of Early Childhood and Early Childhood Education. Professors who are at NIE or NTU Singapore are expected to deliver public lectures/seminars/ workshops and engage with the NIE/NTU community and all stakeholders in Early Childhood Education in Singapore