Aaron Tan’s keen interest in the financial world led him to undertake Business Administration in NUS. When he is not studying in hall, he enjoys sports and fundraising activities. He is an avid believer of striking a balance between student life and academics and highlights that stepping out of your comfort zone is the first step towards a life to the fullest,
Why did you choose to pursue your course of study at NUS?
Since young, I have always been intrigued by how financial markets form vital building blocks of every economy across the world. This sparked off my interest in enrolling in a course in Business. After thorough consideration, I ultimately chose to pursue Business Administration at NUS as not only is the curriculum rigorous, but NUS Business School also focuses on the holistic development of each and every undergraduate. One main highlight of the program is the emphasis on a global education, which provides undergraduates with various opportunities to travel overseas and immerse in different cultures.
Why did you accept the NUS Merit Scholarship?
Prior to matriculating into NUS, I was undecided on which aspect of business I would like to pursue upon graduation as I was keen on many different sectors, such as finance and data analytics. Thus, I entered NUS yearning to gain exposure to different fields in order to find out what I truly enjoy doing. As the NUS Merit Scholarship is bond-free, it grants me the freedom and space to explore my interests. Hence, I believe taking up the scholarship will enable me to grow holistically.
What was the scholarship selection process like?
Overall, the scholarship selection process was a seamless one. Applicants had to first submit school testimonials and an essay through an online portal. All shortlisted applicants would then proceed to the interview-round where we were given a case scenario of a company and were tasked to engage in a group discussion based on a corporate setting.
Why do you think you were awarded the scholarship, and what are the qualities a scholar should possess?
Personally, I feel that being genuine goes a long way, be it in terms of obtaining a scholarship or in our daily interactions with others. Most importantly, scholars should always be humble and grateful. We can be proactive and contribute back to the very society that nurtured us to who we are today. Ultimately, kindness and giving back is what makes the world a more beautiful place!
What are the benefits of taking up the NUS Merit Scholarship?
With the NUS Merit Scholarship, I am able to focus on my studies and worry less about my finances. This has indeed lifted a heavy burden off my shoulders. More importantly, the NUS Merit Scholarship provides me with an opportunity to network with like-minded people and forge tightly-knitted friendships which I believe will last for the years to come.
How has your NUS experience been, and what programmes and activities have you participated in so far?
Looking back, my freshman year in NUS has indeed been a fun and fulfilling one. Although the curriculum is indeed rigorous and can be daunting at times, the circle of friends I have met in NUS has really pulled me through hard times. The NUS experience is a unique one. It strikes a perfect balance between student life and academics. As a freshman, I stayed in the hall and was able to participate in various sports of my interest. Furthermore, I was given the opportunity to head the fundraising logistics department for a Community Service Project to Chiang Mai, Thailand. I felt that it was really meaningful as we were raising funds for a good cause and it was heartening to know how this will go towards helping our beneficiaries in Chiang Mai, Thailand. All in all, my advice to incoming freshmen would be to step out of your comfort zones. After all, you only live once!
TAN YONG CHIEN, AARON
NUS Merit Scholarship
Now: Business Administration, Year 2
From: Raffles Institution