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NTU EEE graduand (Class of 2018): Sophin Teo Shi Min

NTU EEE graduating student, Ms Sophin Teo Shi Min, is part of our Class of 2018! From participating in a meaningful overseas volunteering trip to Laos, to being involved in various other school activities, we find out more about this NTU EEE graduand’s comprehensive and rewarding experiences in the School!

What were some of your favourite activities in NTU EEE?
“Some of my favourite activities were those that the school organises for us – the annual EEE Family Day and Fruit Giveaways every semester. During these events, the school puts in a lot of effort and resources to ensure that students are taken care of and enjoy themselves. For example, this year’s EEE Family Day was held at Sentosa, enabling students and their families to enjoy a fun day out at the beach. Through these events, we got to know other peers – seniors and juniors – and also got in touch with alumni, staff and teaching professors in a more casual setting! These events cultivate a strong and vibrant sense of belonging to the NTU EEE family.”

What do you like about NTU EEE?
“To me, one important factor in choosing NTU EEE was the versality and comprehensiveness of the degree. With many opportunities to learn both theory and hands-on aspects of different technologies, the NTU EEE curriculum was able to help me grow and push me out of the academic boundaries. Furthermore, with a vibrant and fulfilling student life, NTU EEE provided a home of sorts for me with a strong support system, while encouraging us to pursue our interests!

Personally, I did not expect the NTU EEE family to be such a caring and encouraging one – peers and seniors alike are very resourceful and offer their help readily, professors are keen to help in clarifying concepts and providing extra advice, and all the staffs are also committed to assisting students in the best way that they can. The people made my life in NTU EEE a fulfilling one, and inspired me to do the same for my juniors. The best thing about the NTU EEE environment is that it motivates you to contribute and strive for the best – not just purely in the academic aspect, but also allowed me to grow and mature into an individual who puts others above self. I feel thankful and lucky to be a part of this supportive family and hope that I can continue to contribute to the school even after I have graduated!”

What are some of your experiences as an NTU EEE student?
“One of the most memorable experiences I had as an NTU EEE student was planning and leading a team of 13 students for an Overseas Community Involvement Project (OCIP) to Vientiane, Laos in 2016, for 10 days. As part of the NTU e3-LEAD programme (Leadership Enrichment And Development), my co-planner and I were given the opportunity to fully conceptualise, plan and execute an OCIP even though we were inexperienced and new to the process. During our trip to Laos, the team also had the chance to make use of what we learnt in our modules by installing lights and fans for a newly-built school!

Throughout the trip, one phrase that impacted me the most was “small service, big learning” – what we completed for the Laos OCIP trip contributed only a small part to improving the villagers’ lives, but what we learnt from them encompassed way more. We were more thankful and contented about what we have, learnt how to keep a simple and focused outlook on life, and understood more about ourselves and the people around us. This trip definitely helped to shape my personal values, and moulded me into a better person than I was before.

I am very grateful to have been given this opportunity, and hope that more students will go out of their way to push for initiatives that they are passionate about. Ultimately, how much we learn is dependent on how much we participate and push ourselves to ever strive for better!”

What are some of your achievements while being an NTU EEE undergraduate?
“During my undergraduate time in NTU EEE, I was exposed to a range of different opportunities to plan for various events, such as orientation camps, community involvement programmes and alumni activities. As such, I was awarded the e3-LEAD Outstanding Contribution of The Year Award for AY2014/2015 by the School of EEE and appointed as a Student-Alumni Associate by the NTU Alumni Affairs Office.”

What are your plans after graduating?
“I am very fortunate to have been given various job offers from different companies before graduation, and have decided to start my career as an Electrical Engineer in the Transportation & Industrials sector. As engineering in a professional workplace will be different from classroom theories, I am looking forward to learning from experienced technicians in the field, and improve my engineering knowledge and practical skills to contribute back to the company. I am excited about the prospect of being able to continue honing and building up my engineering skillsets after graduation.”

What do you have to say to current and future undergrads?
“In short, be open to new opportunities, stay focused on what you want to achieve, and reach for the stars.

The NTU EEE degree is one of the more challenging degrees to attain. However, the harder the challenge, the sweeter the result will be. Coming into NTU EEE, I was not fully prepared for the challenges and obstacles that came with the degree, but I was able to improve on coping along the way with help from my peers. Peer support is especially important and forms a close support network. If possible, have your support group close to you and keep your sights focused on what is important.

Most importantly, do not underestimate yourself and have faith in your own abilities! Often, we discount ourselves because we are fearful of what we cannot achieve. Give yourself space to explore things that you normally would not and you will see that you are more capable than what you give yourself credit for. Pat yourself on the back for completing the journey, then take the time to think of how you could have made it better. At the end of the day, life goes on and this cycle of self-improvement will always continue!”

​​​Published on 25 May 2018

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