On 10 September 2010, NUS and Yale University signed a Memorandum of Understanding to work towards a collaboration to establish a liberal arts college in NUS. Singapore’s Minister for Education and Second Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen witnessed the event at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, USA.
In a statement made during the meeting with the Yale leadership, Dr Ng said: “It is timely to consider introducing liberal arts education in Singapore. Yale is a world-class university and has a strong tradition in liberal arts education. The Government is supportive of NUS’ and Yale’s efforts to develop a liberal arts model that will attract top students, and that is contextualised to Singapore and Asia.”
President of Yale Prof Richard C Levin said: “It is very exciting to contemplate collaborating with the National University of Singapore to create a new educational model for the 21st century, contextualised especially for Asia. There has never been greater need for undergraduate education that cultivates critical inquiry. In a world that is increasingly interconnected, the qualities of mind developed through liberal education are perhaps more indispensable than ever in preparing students to understand and appreciate differences across cultures and national boundaries, and to address problems for which there are no easy solutions.”
Said NUS President Prof Tan Chorh Chuan: “Our University’s strong and warm partnership with Yale has resulted in several innovative programmes over the last few years. We look forward, with excitement, to further extending our collaborations to an area that is very important for the future, for Singapore and beyond. This MOU with Yale brings us a step closer to making the vision of a liberal arts college in Singapore and at NUS a reality.”