Dear Parents and Alumni Members,
Planting a tree takes a matter of minutes. Days and months of surveying the ground, planning and thinking need to take place before that. The conscientious gardener waters and watches over it on a daily basis. To truly grow, the plant itself must weather the sun, wind and rain, and maybe even rejoice in all conditions.
At our inaugural College Day, we had the chance as students, parents and teachers to plant three trees as symbols of our commitment to build the college. We may only be at Mount Sinai for three years, but the college is here to stay for much longer. Our impact on Singapore will be felt for even longer as we grow the young men and women under our care into leaders of causes and pursuits they are passionate about. We want them to be leaders of people who will in turn plant seeds of their own, and nurture future generations on their own.
Commitment and Growth
Walk a little further from the three trees and you will find further signs of our growth as a college. The murals outside the Humanities Room and Bicultural Studies Programme Room were conceptualised, planned, and painted by our students. It takes courage to fill an empty canvas. We hope their effort, as amateur artists and pioneering students of their programmes, will inspire their juniors to add their own colour to the learning experience at Eunoia.
The college community has been hard at work giving life to this experience. Sports Representatives from all 25 JC1 classes planned, organised and rallied the cohort to participate fully at our first Road Run at Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park. We were delighted to have the avid support of Parents@Eunoia, who were there in person to cheer our students on and hand every participant a post-run snack for their effort. With pledges gathered by our students and the generosity of parents, Lee Foundation, Tote Board and other stakeholders, we were able to raise sufficient funds for student bursaries, scholarships and infrastructural improvements to aid teaching and learning. Our joint commitment promises to give further life to the Eunoia community.
Gift and Grit
In our first semester, our pioneering Eunoians have invigorated the college with their achievements. Our single cohort of athletes has stepped up to the challenge and represented the college with pride, some only with a few months of training on their backs. At times they tasted success, at others they learned valuable lessons. The experience they gained is itself an achievement, knowing that they will rally their juniors next year to perform better as a team. This same experience was shared by their friends in the Performing Arts CCAs. Persisting through three rigorous months of rehearsals, the EJC Symphonic Band and Dance groups achieved a Distinction at the Singapore Youth Festival 2017 Arts Presentation. As news of their success filtered through, there was a rush of excitement and spontaneous joy around the campus — feelings that will be felt frequently and intensely in the coming years.
The talent in Eunoia is clear. Students from the Bicultural Studies Programme have continued to show intellectual mettle, emerging winners at the recent Business China Youth Showdown. Our first contingent of Pre-University Seminar participants dived deep with fellow participants to renew the Singapore dream; enlightened and engaged, they will shine the way forward for subsequent cohorts. A combined Joint Integrated Programme team, under the tutelage of our Music teacher Mr Xie Zhizhong, has made it into the finals of 星空下, the National Xinyao Competition organised by Lianhe Zaobao. Behind these moments of pride, we can recognise in our Eunoians a passion for exploration and the determination to learn whatever the odds.
Heart and Soul
Learning beyond the classroom is something we hold close to us. The months of idea-gathering and deep thinking by our teachers have born fruit in the past semester, in the form of our Mother Tongue Languages (MTL) Fortnight, Humanities and Aesthetics Week (HAW) and the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Week. We want our Eunoians to be exposed to new and insightful perspectives, whether they be from cultural practitioners, Physics professors or Defence Science engineers, so that they are excited about learning and inspired to learn more outside the curriculum. Our students are at the heart of what we do in and outside the classroom. Their joy for learning is our joy to behold. Eunoians have been the soul of our programmes, leading the way in MTL cultural activities and helming STEM workshops for their fellow students on areas such as cryptology and mathematical optimisation. Displays of passion and flair, such as the many Eunoia Got Talent performances during HAW, will be a staple of the Eunoia culture as this pioneer cohort sets the stage for future cohorts.
Strengths and Opportunities
The recently concluded Mid-Year Examination provided our Eunoians an early measure of their academic progress. Importantly, it offers a test of character that leads them to reflect on the progress they have made and the progress they should make in the coming months. It is an opportunity for them to hone their disposition as life-long learners to one of discipline, perseverance and intellectual flexibility.
As a college, we are committed to the growth of our students during their time in college and the long journey after their JC experience. Our students have begun their Life Coaching journey with their teacher-coaches, and these conversations promise to guide them towards an understanding of their strengths, passion and purpose in life. The upcoming meeting with parents of our JC1 students will give Eunoians yet another opportunity to chart their own growth, and make the sometimes challenging transition to independence and maturity.
Giving and Building
For our students to make the most of their strengths and the best of their challenges, our partnership with parents is vital. The formation of the Parents@Eunoia executive committee, under the leadership of Mr Wong Liang Tang (Chairperson), Mrs Carol Wee (Vice-Chairperson) and executive secretaries Ms Florence Seah (Administration / Treasury), Mdm August Shi Dian Ting (Programme / Coordination) and Mdm Chai Hui Ling (External Relations), looks to strengthen this partnership. We are especially thankful for the tremendous effort they have put in, from facilitating communications with fellow parents to improving the college experience of our pioneering cohort. We would like to extend this gratitude to Ms Winy Quek, who has steadily provided support and guidance in the establishment of Parents@Eunoia in the role of advisor. United in purpose and spirit, the college and Parents@Eunoia hope to engage more parents in this journey of growth.
Half a year into the Eunoia story, we stay committed to building our firm foundations. Through courage, dedication and grit, our trees are beginning to show signs of flourish. For all the beautiful flowers they may grow or the heights they may reach, we want them to be able to survive the harshest weather, to shelter those in need, and always give life to their surroundings for tens and hundreds of years in future. We look forward to working together with you on this commitment to our Eunoians.
Mrs Wong-Cheang Mei Heng