Yale-NUS College founding president not to seek second term when his presidency concludes in May 2017

13 July 2016

Professor Pericles Lewis completes his term as inaugural President of Singapore’s first liberal arts college. Search for new president to start in the upcoming academic year.

Yale-NUS College announced today that President Pericles Lewis will not seek a second term when his five-year term concludes on 31 May 2017. As the founding president of Yale-NUS College, President Lewis has been instrumental in leading the College to a remarkable number of milestones since his appointment in 2012.

“Everyone in the Yale-NUS family is driven by our belief in the incredible potential that the College holds for the future of liberal education not just for Asia, but for the world. No one has embodied this passion and dedication to our mission more clearly than President Lewis has over the last five years,” said Madam Kay Kuok, Chair of the College’s Governing Board.

“When we were recruiting President Lewis, we were aware that he would likely return to the United States so that his children might conclude secondary school there,” she continued. “He was such an attractive candidate that we wanted the opportunity for him to serve regardless. Our faith has been amply rewarded. President Lewis’ scholarly credentials are matched by exceptional qualities of leadership. These qualities have been invaluable as the College had to imagine and then create every aspect of itself.  As evidence of this, we can look to the quality of the faculty, the coherence of the curriculum, the culture of the community, the zeal of the students, the commitment of the staff, and the attractiveness of the new campus. ”

Since President Lewis was appointed, Yale-NUS College has achieved a remarkable number of milestones. Some highlights include admitting the College’s inaugural class of over 150 outstanding students in 2013, to building a student body that today includes over 700 students, who hail from more than 50 countries over six continents. The College is one of the most selective in the world. Entering students have top grades and test scores as well as demonstrated leadership potential. While at Yale-NUS, our matriculated students have won numerous national and international awards and founded over 50 student organisations. Yale-NUS has also recruited more than 120 faculty members from leading colleges and universities around the world who are highly qualified in their areas of expertise and have many years of experience in undergraduate teaching. Today, the College offers a distinctive curriculum and residential programme that encourages active learning, adaptability and critical thought operating from an award-wining campus that was completed in 2015 and inaugurated by Singapore’s Prime Minister Mr Lee Hsien Loong in October 2015. Under President Lewis’ leadership, the College’s academic affairs and administrative staff have demonstrated great commitment to the mission of Yale-NUS in creating the best environment for students to receive the highest quality of education possible.

President Lewis said, “My greatest source of pride is Yale-NUS College’s success in living up to the underlying values of liberal education: free inquiry, open discussion, respect for a diversity of views, and the constant search for knowledge. I believe that this ethos will inspire our community in the years to come and will continue to attract some of the world’s best students, faculty, and administrators to Yale-NUS.” After his term with Yale-NUS College, President Lewis will be returning to Yale University, where he will take up a senior administrative post.

The Governing Board will be commencing the search for the position of President in the academic year 2016/2017. The new president is expected to be appointed by June 2017.


For media enquiries, please contact publicaffairs@yale-nus.edu.sg.