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Feature

Movers, shakers and go-getters

Everyone’s a winner in NTU’s Class of 2017. HEY! salutes the many talents in our midst here

Mr Unbreakable award

Ashiq Sarip

Mechanical engineering

  • Ashiq Sarip shouting into a loudhailer prop
  • Ashiq Sarip
  • Ashiq Sarip
PHOTOS: MARK TEO

Convocation is a special time for every graduate, but for Ashiq, it’s even more meaningful. Less than four years ago, he was lying in a hospital bed, barely able to move.

“I was diagnosed with Stage 4 lymphoma cancer. I couldn’t stop coughing, I couldn’t sleep and I couldn’t eat. I felt hopeless. But it’s not in my personality to back down easily, so I persevered. Thankfully, the chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatments worked and I went into remission after a year.”

Other than the “continuous armada of assignments” to take his mind of his health problems, he found encouragement in NTU through his professors, such as Prof Ooi Kim Tiow, Asst Prof Pham Quang Cuong and Assoc Prof Chai Gin Boay.

“Beyond classrooms and textbooks, they often offered life advice,” says Ashiq. “For the rest of my life, I’ll remember Prof Ooi telling me to ‘always be ready to lend a helping hand’.”

As his professors did for him, he plans to use the power of words to inspire others, especially those who are going through similar hardships.

“I plan to be an inspirational speaker, not only for cancer patients but for the general public as well. Being able to do this will surpass any accomplishment I have. And it would be an absolute privilege to emulate those who have inspired me.”