As one of the pioneer graduates of the USP + Law programme, Miin’s takeaways from USP ranged from the community to the academic. “My main takeaway from USP was how much it broadened the horizons of my university life,” says the alumni.
Engaging the Community
“The best feeling is seeing the fruits of your efforts, when everyone is engaged and enjoying themselves!”
As a law student, most of Miin’s classes were held at NUS’s Bukit Timah campus. “If it weren’t for USP, I wouldn’t really have had any reason to come to the main campus, or even interact with so many people from a diverse range of majors and faculties,” shares Miin.
Miin’s first year in USP was centered around her house, the purple Ianthe, and till today her housemates are still part of her primary social circle. The impulse to participate further in her community has also led Miin to serve as the House Captain of Ianthe for two semesters. “One of the most memorable events I organised as a House Captain would be Marshmellow Night,” Miin reminisces.
An event jointly organised with the 5 other House Captains of USP, Marshmellow Night brought USP together around a make shift-barbeque bit at the amphitheatre of Cinnamon College. It was a merry night of roasting marshmellows and joyous company. “It was rewarding to organise events to engage the community; the best feeling is seeing the fruits of your efforts, when everyone is engaged and enjoying themselves,” Miin recalls.
Miin’s keenness to serve the community saw her joining the Dinner and Dance Night organising committee in 2013, as part of that year’s Freshmen Orientation Programme (FOP). Together with her team, they pulled off a night of glitz and glamour at CHIJMES, leaving a memorable experience for not just her, but everyone else who participated. Miin also served as a USP Ambassador, reaching out to different stakeholders and helping them understand USP. She is also a Class Ambassador (batch representative) for the USP Class of 2016.
Beyond USP, Miin was also active in the NUS Jazz Band, serving as its President in 2013-2014, and was awarded the NUS Centre For the Arts Honours Award 2015 for her outstanding contribution to the arts in NUS.
Challenging the Mind
“Taking USP alongside Law was not always easy, but it was something I definitely don’t regret”
The foundation tier Writing and Critical Thinking (WCT) module taught Miin a lot about writing at a university level, and was especially useful in her senior years of academic writing. Miin took “Language, Culture and ‘Native’ Peoples”, taught by the endearing Associate Professor Peter Vail. The module introduced her to anthropological, sociological and linguistic perspectives on depictions of natives and primitive cultures. Apart from the fascinating content, the module also equipped Miin with the relevant academic writing skills, such as breaking down arguments, designing research and examining writing styles.
“USP’s modular requirements, far from limiting me, enhanced my academic experience, and gave me opportunities to study numerous disciplines.” Miin thoroughly enjoyed USP Sciences and Technologies modules as they enabled her to explore fields that she would have never stepped into as a law student. She fondly remembers the module “The Technology of Life - Machines That Go Squish”. In this inquiry tier module taught by Associate Professor Saif Khan, she was pushed to apply the content learnt to real world scenarios. Straddling engineering physics and evolutionary biology, the module investigated how various living organisms have evolved and developed unique circumventions to physical obstacles. “This module encapsulated my experience of grappling with an interdisciplinary study of various scientific fields,” Miin recounts.
Miin’s USP journey has been nothing short of ins and outs, but she looks back with nothing but a fruitful nostalgia. “Make the most of your time in university! It’s so short – treasure it!” Miin advises her juniors. “Also, always bring a pen and paper everywhere with you – you never know when you’ll need it.”
Miin is currently training to be a fully qualified Lawyer, and sings whenever legal work affords the time.