WWIE'S FAMILY TREE
LEARN ABOUT THE INSPIRING STORIES OF THE INSPIRING WOMEN IN OUR WARWICK COMMUNITY
Our stories begin at home and mine begins on a little red dot on the map, called Singapore. When I was awarded the Singapore Public Service Commission (PSC) Scholarship at 18 years old, the opportunity arose for me to prepare myself to take on the baton of ensuring Singapore’s continued advancement in a changing world. However, behind the prestige of the scholarship, there lies a responsibility to serve a cause greater than myself. With ambition and responsibility to carefully construct and contextualise public policies for future generations, a new chapter in my story started to enfold…
At my first major crossroads of life, I had two choices: I could comfortably stride along a path that was bound to be safe but lacked new challenges or I could walk boldly into the unknown in hopes of bettering myself as a person. With the mindset that dreams and reality are two sides of the same coin and that we have the power to decide what we want, I chose to step out of my comfort zone and travel 10,954 kilometres to the United Kingdom.
To make the most of my experience studying abroad, I was inclined towards a course that was not only aligned with my interest in policy-making but would also prepare me with the necessary skills and expertise. As the distinction between domestic and international affairs blurs with globalisation, I discerned that leaders and public servants engaging in public policies would require the ability to understand and link the dynamics of domestic and international dimensions. With a forward-looking mentality, I decided to study an interdisciplinary undergraduate programme of Economics, Politics and International Studies to ensure that I develop a strong foundation in contextualising economic theory and practice within national and global political structures and behaviour. Having recently completed this course, I am confident to say that I have developed an interdisciplinary and rounded perspective that places me in good stead in pursuing my ambitions of formulating and refining policies in my home country and eventually on the international stage. Besides using my studies to explore my interest in Economics and Politics, I was Head of Operations of the Warwick ASEAN Conference, which is the largest student-led ASEAN conference in the UK. Not only was I able to develop skills of planning and coordination, but I was also able to use this experience to share and advance my knowledge of ASEAN’s role on the international stage as an intergovernmental organisation. These experiences have allowed me to apply what I have learnt into tangible outcomes of conferences and policy-related research.
Moving forward, I would be pursuing my postgraduate studies in public policy and I aspire to use my skills and passion to address global challenges with a shrewd mindset and open heart. With such exciting developments and hopes for a more inclusive society, I hope to be at the forefront of these changes and be a trailblazer for my generation and those to come.
“A girl can never be that outspoken”, growing up in an Asian household we were expected to behave in a certain way. Thankfully, I was fortunate enough to be given the opportunity to not only speak, but more importantly, to be heard. As the eldest grandchild of my household, I became the first female in my family to major in economics at university level, following the trajectories of my male relatives. My ability to break stereotypes and pave the path for my female relatives to study a course that is considered rather more male ‘dominated’, is something I’m very proud of to this day. My hope is to continue to inspire more young women and encourage them to go ahead and realize their dreams.
Being the only female to hold the position of Vice President at my economics society was both a dream come true and a journey filled with challenges and rewards. Despite being the only leader “different” to her two male counterparts, this did not stop me from standing up for what’s right. In fact, I consider myself to be a representative of all female executives and members in our society; this is what motivates me to always do my very best.
Thankful for my rich parentage, being trilingual has given me the opportunity to communicate and inspire young women from different cultural backgrounds. I hope to continue to inspire young women with my story, by following the path of countless inspiring women that have paved the journey before me.
My lifetime goal is to start my own non-profit organisation for young girls from disadvantaged households to help make education more widespread and accessible; as I genuinely believe education has all the power to change lives for the better.
Lastly, and most importantly to me, I know I have made my grandmother proud, the dearest person whose biggest wish was to see me go to university, since she couldn’t experience it herself as a World War II survivor.
I have been told countless times at just 20 years old that I can be overly assertive, demanding and opinionated, but I hope for people to view this as being confident, empowered and empathetic. To the many beautiful ladies out there who have supported, motivated and inspired me, thank you. All of you have and continue to be a huge inspiration to me, and I hope to make each and every one of you proud, today and always.
The thought of directing a gigantic play was daunting; not only did it have to be good enough for people to pay to see, but it also had to satisfy my own expectations; for anyone who understands how hard one can be on themselves, knows how difficult this might be.
Ultimately, there were two main takeaways from my experience in directing:
1. Humans are such capable and gifted creatures.
The majority of my teammates signed up to be a part of the play to try new things, ranging from dance, prop design and acting. Somehow, my responsibility was to lead and manage complete newcomers to put on an incredible live performance, all in the span of 4 months (all whilst trying to fulfill those really high expectations I set for myself). Although there might’ve been clunky beginnings, the final success of the production was one I owed to every single participant who made it come to life.
The best part was that I got to watch the crew grow to become truly incredible performers, creators and artists. As much as the outcome of the play brought me a sense of pride, pride beyond my expectations, I must admit that my favorite part of this whole experience was to watch everyone’s progress and growth. Throughout these 4 months of hard work, seeing how the crew gradually became more and more confident in themselves taught me just how capable people are of achieving amazing things, even if they might not see it as first!
2. The importance of channeling your passion in everything you do.
I remember burning with a fiery passion whenever I talked about my play; whether the discussion was about script development, pitch proposals, recruitment or marketing. That’s always been how I communicated things, but I’ve only recently realised what an important aspect it is.
First, it gets you going through tough times; whenever I felt that I had bitten off more than I could chew (in terms of workload), I would remind myself of the message I wanted to convey to the audience, the purpose of my play and passion for theatre. This is definitely what lifted my spirits plenty of times, probably too many to count! I personally believe this is applicable to any sort of job that you do.
Secondly, I realised just how visible my passion was to those around me, more often than not, seeing that passion endeared my cause to them as well. People would often tell me that they enjoyed seeing me so excited about my work, and regularly expressed their support. I think passion is infectious, and people will definitely respond well to it. Maybe those “passionate speeches” we hear a lot in movies that would lead to triumphs and successes actually may have some truth in it.
My journey as Artistic and Cultural Development Director has certainly been an eye-opening experience, and I think I will regularly regard it as the biggest influence in my life - at least until the next time I direct a giant play!