Singapore, September 2, 2009: The Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy today celebrated the fifth anniversary of its establishment as an autonomous graduate school of the National University of Singapore. To mark the occasion, the School hosted a gala dinner for 800 guests, including government ministers, ambassadors, business and civil-society leaders, the School’s governing board, faculty and students. Singapore Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew was the guest of honour and participated in a dialogue session with the guests.
During the gala dinner, the School honoured new donors who made contributions to the School from March 2007 onwards. Since then, the School received pledges for new donations amounting to S$28.5 million, from both individual and corporate philanthropists. Donors who gave S$ 1 million or more, received a memento from Minister Mentor Lee. Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean recognized other donors for their generosity.
In his address to the gathering, Prof Kishore Mahbubani, Dean, Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy said, “With the help of Mr Wong Ngit Liong, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of NUS, and Prof Tan Chorh Chuan, President of NUS, we set a target of raising S$ 5 million for this 5th Anniversary. Hence, I am pleased to announce today that the LKY School has raised $16.5 million. After including the Government’s matching grants, we would have raised $33 million, far exceeding our initial target.”
The School marked the occasion by announcing the appointment in early 2010 of former United Nations Secretary-General and Nobel Laureate Kofi Annan, as the first Li Ka-shing Professor. The Li Ka-shing Professorship was created following the donation of S$100 million to the School by Dr. Li Ka-shing in March 2007.
The School also announced the launch of its first Chinese-language programme, the Master in Public Management and Administration in collaboration with NUS Business School. The ten-month programme slated to begin in March 2010 is targeted at senior Chinese officials from central, provincial and municipal governments.
Tracing the growth of the school Prof. Kishore Mahbubani said,” We started with 40 students from a handful of countries. Today we have 337 students from 52 countries and territories, making us one of the most diverse schools of public policy in the world. After Singapore, the three countries that provide the largest numbers of students in our 2009 cohort are India, China and USA. Coincidentally, Goldman Sachs predicts that these three countries will have the largest economies in 2050.”
“The success of the LKY School owes a lot to the founding fathers of Singapore whose legacy of principles, policies and institutions continues to amaze and often inspire the rest of the world,” noted Prof Mahbubani.
The dinner was also attended by (1) Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defence Teo Chee Hean; (2) Minister for Foreign Affairs George Yeo; (3) Minister, Prime Minister’s Office, Lim Boon Heng; (4) Minister for Finance, Tharman Shanmugaratnam; (5) Minister, Prime Minister’s Office and Second Minister for Finance and Transport, Lim Hwee Hua; (6) Minister for Law and Second Minister for Home Affairs, K Shanmugam; and (7) Senior Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Zainul Abidin Rashid.
About the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy
The Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy is an autonomous, professional graduate school of the National University of Singapore. Its mission is to help educate and train the next generation of Asian policy makers and leaders, with the objective of raising the standards of governance throughout the region, improving the lives of its people and, in so doing, contribute to the transformation of Asia. For more details on the LKY School, please visit www.lkyspp.nus.edu.sg.