Coming to Singapore

In 1999, I received a scholarship to pursue undergraduate studies in Singapore. This, I believe, was a major turning point in my life. My stay in Singapore up to now has been a shaping period of my life. I have learned to be independent. I have learned to relate with people with different backgrounds and principles. But the most impactful shaping came when I developed an interest in reading. This probably would not have been the case had I not come to Singapore. Studying in Singapore required me to communicate in English. As my knowledge of English grew, and with English resources abundantly available, it was only natural that I would soon take interest in reading. I found I have benefited much from reading. Apart from improving my writing, it has helped me to have a better view of the world. C. S. Lewis once said, “We read to know we are not alone.” How true it is. By reading I have been able to learn from people in a distant land or those who lived many generations ago, but whose writings still speak. By reading I learned how science has progressed or revolutionized. By reading I have also been able to learn not only from the knowledge of scientists, but also from their inspiring lives. I am always keen to know how renowned scientists or researchers do their research or what their pastimes are. Any hints are valuable to me. It was amusing and encouraging at the same time to read the biographical accounts of scientists like Fritz Ursell, for example, who in his reminiscences of his early career in waves took the trouble to show his gratefulness to other scientists who had had impact in his life and to show his joy in seeing his students thrive. Thus through what they write, they have showed me as well what kind of research attitude I should have.

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