10 things on your university checklist

Your undergraduate years will help you transform from a student to a young working adult. What attributes do you hope to graduate with?

By Aaron Corbett
1. Be worldly-wise
NTU plans to have eight in 10 undergrads go overseas at least once during their studies. Whether it's for a study exchange, a work attachment, summer studies, an overseas competition or to develop your research with world-leading scientists, NTU offers enriching overseas opportunities as the university strongly believes that global exposure should be part of your education. There are travel grants and scholarships to help cover some of your trip expenses.
2. Be independent
With over 1,200 hall spaces added in 2014, and with more to come, all NTU freshmen are guaranteed accommodation in Year One so they can focus on the important things like settling into university life. Run for leadership positions, interact with residents from different cultures on this cosmopolitan campus with more than 100 nationalities, and learn to live on your own. Freshies should not pass up on the chance to experience hall life on a campus that has been named one of the Top 15 Most Beautiful in the World.
3. Be a high-flyer (right from the start)
A scholarship is a great addition to any resume. Even better, it helps outstanding students maximise their time in university. NTU offers a wide range of scholarships with different perks. Top students can apply for bond-free scholarships like the Nanyang Scholarship and College Scholarship, and embark on their dream careers right after graduation.
4. Be well-recognised
Shooting up global ranking tables, NTU is now placed 39th in the world by Quacquarelli Symonds (QS), rising 35 places in just four years. Among the world’s young, elite universities, NTU is right up there at the top, ranking first among thousands of other universities set up less than 50 years ago. If you’re driven to succeed, this is the place to be. Not only that, a degree from a top university will be worth more in the long run, too.
5. Be workplace ready
To thrive in the future workplace, you need to be aware of the interrelated issues affecting society. Dipping your toes in different disciplines means you’ll be exposed to issues beyond your own niche areas, and be able to draw connections between them. At NTU, students can challenge themselves in diverse fields by taking a mix of double majors, minors and electives. Freshmen are also given time to ease into university life – they can retake up to six modules that they didn’t manage to clear without affecting their grade point average in their first year.
6. Be a learning pro
Your learning doesn’t end with your graduation. At NTU, you’ll master the art of learning so that you can continue to upgrade your skills to maintain your competitive edge. Lessons are interactive and engaging. From Coursera to “flipped classrooms”, lectures and course materials can also be found online, while tutorials are held in specially configured rooms designed to stimulate discussion and interaction.
7. Be the next mentor
Not just home to some of the world’s biggest partners and most influential scientific minds, NTU is also a place where teachers do much more than teach, like Prof Vijay Sethi, who was named the world’s best business professor by The Economist magazine. Professors who inspire you and bring out your full potential – these mentors are within reach. Shaped by this positive experience, you too could be on your way to becoming a mentor someday.
8. Be an epicurean
Whether you’re looking for Pizza Hut, Starbucks, Llaollao or a simple char kway teow, all your favourite F&B options are right here. Fourteen popular fast food joints, cafés and restaurants call NTU home, not to mention 11 food courts scattered across NTU’s 200-hectare grounds. With a new retail and food hub to be ready in 2015, there’ll be even less of a reason to leave the campus.
9. Be sought-after
Get to your dream job, early. Completing one and sometimes two or three internships gives NTU grads a sharper edge in the job market. Some are hired as early as their second year after performing well during their internships. About nine in 10 NTU students get a job within six months of completing their final exams. Each year, NTU holds Singapore’s largest career fairs for its graduating class to secure jobs with top organisations such as DBS, Singapore Airlines and more.
10. Be yourself
Last but not least, at NTU, you can be yourself. Like to don power suits and show your most persuasive side? Do a major at Nanyang Business School. Prefer to get behind the mechanics of building an eco car, create an animation video or write a comedy script? Satisfy your calling at the schools of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering, Art, Design & Media or Communication & Information. Have fun in the process!