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08 3.04.17

ISSN NO. 0218-7310

What’s Inside Canteen A extended wing faces poor sales NEWS | Page 02

Which hall is the most energy efficient? LIFESTYLE | Page 06

Guaranteed 2-year hall stay for incoming freshmen NEWS | Page 03

Driving innovation

SPOTLIGHT | Page 16-17

Campus style stars DAPPER | Page 13-15


Poor business in Canteen A extended wing

Stall owners at Canteen A’s extended wing complain of low foot traffic and students’ lack of awareness of the wing’s location. This is how the extending wing looks like at 3pm on a weekday. PHOTO: VALERIE LAY

Some stall owners have raised the issue to University management to no avail Lim Woei Lin STALL owners at the extended wing of the North Spine Food Court have complained of poor business, citing low foot traffic and students being unaware of the location. Located on the second level of the North Spine Plaza, the North Spine Food Court — also known as Canteen A — consists of a main wing with 13 stalls selling mainly local delicacies. The smaller extended wing, which opened in 2014, supports six stalls, including Japanese and Western stalls.

To reach the extended wing, students need to walk through the main wing and down a short corridor, or take the elevator from the first level. Ms Wendy Goh, an employee at Western stall Hot Potato Cafe and Grill, said: “Our business is not as good as the main wing as they have a staircase leading to the main door of the canteen.” “Not many students use the lift, and we only get stray customers who cross the main wing to get to us,” she added. Hot Potato Cafe and Grill, which has been operating at the extended wing for about two years, sees an average of 300 customers a day. An employee working at a Chinese stall in the main wing, who declined to be named, told the

Nanyang Chronicle that her stall “easily” sees more than 300 customers daily. Stall owners from the extended wing said their busiest hours are during lunchtime. When the Chronicle visited the extended wing at 1pm on a Monday, almost all seats were occupied. But a visit during non-peak hours, between 3pm and 5pm, saw only nine students at the extended wing, while at least 50 were dining in the main wing. “Students do not know of the extended wing unless they happen to walk over. We survive on regular customers,” added Ms Goh. Limited seating capacity at the extended wing also plagues stall owners. The North Spine Food Court has an overall seating capac-

ity of nearly 2,000, but there are only about 140 seats in the extended wing. An employee at the Vietnamese Cuisine stall, who declined to be named, said: “During lunchtime, both wings can be packed, and those who cannot find seats here may choose not to purchase their food as it is not convenient. The main wing has more seats so it is more advantageous for them.” She said her stall sees an average of only 200 customers daily. Some stall owners said they have raised the issue to the University management before, but have not been informed if any actions have been taken. Most of them hope to see more signboards put up to direct students to the extended wing. “Even if no one brought the issue up to the managers, they should know of the poorer foot traffic and business that we suffer. The problem is so obvious,” said an employee at Xi‘an Cuisine, who only wanted to be known as Mr Liu. “Nothing has been done, and I also do not know if anything can be done to improve the situation,” he added, speaking in Mandarin. Currently, only a sign on a pillar located near the back of the main wing directs students to head down the corridor for more food options. In response to the Chronicle’s queries, North Spine Food Court manager Jackson Loy said he did not see any problem with business in the extended wing, and that “students are aware of both wings”. Chief Housing & Auxiliary Services Officer Jimmy Lee said: “Sales at North Spine Food Court continue to be brisk and we have even received a request from the Students’ Union to have more

seats.” He declined to provide further information in the meantime. Most students whom the Chronicle spoke to said they were aware of the extended wing, though it took some time before they found out about it. National Institute of Education (NIE) postgraduate student Bettina Liang, 28, said she only discovered the extended wing by accident after eating at the main wing daily for three weeks. This happened when she sprained her ankle and was forced to take the elevator up, which led her to the corridor connecting the two wings. “I would probably have discovered the extended wing someday since I tend to have my meals at NIE or North Spine. But its location is hard to find,” she said. Despite eating at Canteen A at least twice a week since 2014, third-year School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering student Jamie Lim said she was unaware of the extended wing’s existence. The 22-year-old said: “I’ll usually buy from the yong tau foo or chicken rice stalls, which are at the front of the main wing. People seated at the front wouldn’t discover the extended wing at the back and some students don’t have time to walk to the back too.” Others, such as second-year School of Humanities and Social Sciences student Xu Yan, 21, have become regular patrons of the stalls in the extended wing. She said: “It is more troublesome getting to the extended wing, but I like the food sold here better. “It’s also quieter due to the lack of crowds, which makes it better for studying. I can focus on my work while having lunch at the same time.”

NTU slips 2 spots in this year’s Asia university rankings Wong Jing Hui NTU now ranks fourth in Asia in the 2017 Times Higher Education Asia University Rankings, slipping from its No. 2 spot in 2016. The National University of Singapore (NUS) was ranked top university in Asia for the second year in a row. Despite an increase in the University’s overall score from 72.9 points in 2016 to 74.2 points this year, NTU still fell behind secondplace Peking University and thirdplace Tsinghua University. This is in contrast to the QS Asia

University Rankings 2016-17 released last month, which ranked NTU as 2nd in Asia. In response to NTU’s ranking, NTU President Professor Bertil Andersson said: “The competition is of course much keener when you are at the top, with many similarly dynamic and ambitious Asian universities putting up a strong fight. Some fluctuations each year are not unexpected when you are in the top league.” Prof Andersson added that he was content with the University’s achievement. “I’m happy that NTU

has performed better and has higher scores compared to last year. Compared to two years ago when we were placed 10th, we have made big strides up in the rankings, although not as much as last year.” Times Higher Education rankings editor Phil Baty said: “NTU has done well and improved its overall score in the tables since last year, but China’s Peking and Tsinghua universities improved by a larger margin, resulting in their second and third rankings respectively.” Students interviewed by the Nanyang Chronicle said they were

not bothered by the fall in ranking. Second-year School of Art, Design and Media student Lea Wong, 21, said: “A ranking shouldn’t define us as NTU students or how we regard the school. It boils down to the fact that we are studying what we are passionate about. “Rank should not be a focus, it should be viewed as a bonus.” Others said the ranking slip did not undermine their academic experiences here so far. Shivam Chopra, 22, a fourth-year Nanyang Business School student, said he hopes the drop will spur the

University to do better. “We just have to keep improving ourselves and learn from the two universities that have overtaken us. A fall in ranking does not mean that NTU is a bad university.” For Wong Song Wei, 24, a thirdyear Renaissance Engineering Programme student, learning experience for the past three years on campus has been largely positive. He said: “The professors try their best to be clear by explaining concepts and making sure we can understand it. They are very approachable as well.”







NTU guarantees 2-year hall stay for incoming freshmen Current students express concerns about how this will impact hall culture on campus Paige Lim News Editor FROM AUGUST, incoming University freshmen will be guaranteed a residential place on campus in their first two years, up from the current first-year stay. This latest development was announced by NTU President Professor Bertil Andersson in his annual State of the University Address on 16 Mar, which was attended by more than 1,700 students and faculty members. “A residential experience is part of the holistic education we offer here at NTU," said Prof Andersson. "Since 2012, we have guaranteed every freshman the opportunity to live on campus in their first year so that everyone has a chance to experience it.” To meet the high demand for campus residency, “a lot of construction” has been taking place in the University over the last few years, he added. Last September, three new halls opened at the North Hill precinct, offering 2,100 more places to students. Another three new halls will open at Nanyang Crescent in August, which will cater to another 1,820 students. By then, the University will be able to house 14,200 undergraduates in 24 residential halls, fulfilling more than 90 per cent of the current demand.

Mixed reactions

Students interviewed by the Nanyang Chronicle had mixed reactions to the new scheme. While most acknowledged the benefits prospective freshmen stood to gain, others questioned the potential impact on hall places and hall culture for existing residents. Currently, freshmen are only guaranteed a residential place on campus in their first year. A residential place on campus is highly sought after, with places awarded to seniors based on a competitive entry point system. “The plan is beneficial, especially for those who stay in the East. It’ll be easier for them to get a hall place now as they will not have to compete for points as much,” said second-year School of Art, Design and Media student Sim Xin Feng. Despite participating in hall activities in her first year, Sim, 23, did not accumulate enough points to secure another year of

hall stay. The former Hall 12 resident, who lives in Ang Mo Kio, now spends over an hour and a half travelling to school every day.

Fewer places for seniors

Others, such as first-year School of Humanities and Social Sciences (HSS) student Nadhira Putri, 19, expressed concern that extending the residential stay for freshmen would compromise hall places for seniors in the future. Putri, who stays in Hall 16, said: “I’m frustrated that this (scheme) wasn’t there before; I just missed it by a year. I hope that opening up the rooms to freshmen will not affect seniors’ chances in getting rooms, like those who have actually worked for hall points.” Her sentiments were echoed by final-year School of Civil and Environmental Engineering student Lim Kuan Yuan, 25. “I’m happy for the freshmen. But I feel worse for the second-year students who may not be able to stay, because of the privileges the freshmen are getting,” said the former Hall 15 resident. To make things fair, first-year HSS student Esther Poon believes the new scheme should be extended to current students, who still have to work to keep their hall spot. “It'll be nice if they helped us, especially the current first-years, since we have three more years of schooling ahead,” she added. “Why not make things easier for us?”

Effect on hall culture

New residents might also have less motivation to participate in hall activities, since they are automatically guaranteed a two-year-long spot, said Hall 16 president Paul Lee, 23. “While the new arrangement would allow freshmen to concentrate on their academics more, it might be much harder to bond people and get them to be involved in their hall community. "This will also affect the overall spirit of interhall competitions,” said the second-year School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering student. He added: “Residential halls will need to work harder in creating an environment that will encourage residents to contribute and desire to return to their initial hall.” (Additional reporting by Lim Woei Lin, Shabana Begum and Wong Jing Hui)

By August this year, the University will be able to house 14,200 undergraduates in 24 residential halls, fulfilling more than 90 per cent of the current demand for campus housing. PHOTO: VALERIE LAY



BANYAN, TANJONG, BINJAI Completed in September 2016

$35 million sports hall, spanning almost 10,000 sqm over three storeys


Accomodates 2,100 students

Accommodates 1,820 students



single rooms

single rooms

294 twin sharing rooms


24 halls

of residence

266 twin sharing rooms

> 90%

of current demand fulfilled

Ready by August 2017

181 sqm indoor gymnasium One multi-purpose hall which can house a full-sized basketball court

14,200 places

for undergraduates to live on campus GRAPHIC: TEO HSIN WEI







Hall 4 renovations set to be completed in August 2018 Residents are staying put, despite inconvenience and noise from ongoing renovations Eleanor Tay STUDENTS staying at Hall of Residence 4 will have to endure another year of renovations. The hall has been under renovation since last July to refurbish and expand existing facilities. But construction work will continue over the next two years in two phases, according to the Office of Housing and Auxiliary Services (HAS), with completion slated for August 2018. “The renovations will address residents’ complaints, with the incorporation of more meeting rooms and air-conditioned rooms”, said Hall 4 President Vincent Low, 23, a second-year Nanyang Business School student. Most residents have chosen to remain in hall despite the ongoing renovation. But others complain about the noise.

Noise all day long

“We don’t understand why they can’t do construction at non-critical times" said resident Zhan Xian, 25. “Drilling was most noisy during the end of the last semester, when I was studying in my room. They had the whole 10 weeks before to do it, but they didn’t.” The third-year Nanyang Business School student added: “They are currently drilling the floor tiles so it’s been very noisy these weeks, especially since they start at around 10am in the morning and only end around 6pm or 7pm.” The noise is mainly from construction workers hacking down

walls to make space for new windows in every room, which will be the biggest addition to the hall, according to Low. Blocks 26 and 27 will be fully refurbished at the end of this academic year, while Blocks 22 to 25 will be revamped during the next academic year. Current residents from Blocks 22 to 25 will be reassigned to stay in Blocks 26 and 27 in the meantime, while other residents will be reallocated to other halls. The new intake of freshmen into Hall 4 will also be reduced, said HAS.

Areas cordoned off

Residents said they have also been inconvenienced by the cordoning off of certain areas, such as communal spaces and the main entrance, which are next to the blocks undergoing renovation. Currently, residents can only enter the hall through the side entrances leading from Nanyang Lake or Hall 1. Some residents have even resorted to using the emergency exit as a shortcut. “We lose out on meeting with people by chance at the void deck areas and stone tables," said resident Ong Tze Shern, 22. “The two stone tables were where people could just chill and eat in between classes or before going up to hall.” The third-year School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering student added: “Location-wise, we are good because we are near North and South Spine, as well as

Hall of Residence 4 will be undergoing renovations until 2018. The main entrance to the hall (above) has been cordoned off, forcing residents to use the side entrances or the emergency exit to enter. PHOTO: VALERIE LAY

the Hive and Nanyang Business School. But within our hall, we don’t really have anything now.” Dust from the renovation has not been much of an issue with residents, though this was intially a concern. Second-year Nanyang Business School student Soh Siok Kheng, 21, who lives in a non-air conditioned room, said: “The dust doesn’t really get to me, as my room is not facing the construction site. Even those who stay near the construction area say they don’t find it too bad."

Canteen overhaul

On top of the ongoing renovations in hall, residents expressed hope

for the nearby Canteen 4 to be given an overhaul as well. Those interviewed by the Nanyang Chronicle said they no longer patronise the canteen because of the “poor quality” and “lack of variety” of food sold. Currently, Canteen 4 only has three stalls: two Chinese Cuisine stalls, as well as one selling drinks and snacks. First-year School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering student Chan Shan Liang, 20, said: “Only international students purchase food here. The food here is quite bad, so most of us would rather go out for supper or eat at the other canteens during the day.”

In spite of all the temporary inconvenience, Chan said he is looking forward to the new changes in his hall. “Our current windows are super tiny and only located at the corners of the room, so it's really hard to get sunlight and air," he said. "Having more windows will definitely make the room more airy.” Most residents said they were willing to grin and bear with it, as long it means being with their friends in the same hall. Second-year School of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences student Jewelle Koh, 21, said: “It’s become a place we feel a lot for, and the people here are worth it.”

Faculty members honoured at Nanyang Awards Ceremony Shabana Begum MORE than 20 faculty members received the Nanyang Education Award last month at the Nanyang Awards Ceremony, in recognition of their effective teaching methods and concern for students’ learning. The Nanyang Education Award, which has been given out for the past 22 years, is the highest honour conferred by the University to academic staff. The Nanyang Education Award (University - Gold) was given to Dr Mark Cenite, Associate Chair of the Wee Kim Wee School of Communication and Information (WKWSCI).

Dr Cenite was also named Educator of the Year. Professor Ong Yew Soon from the School of Computer Science and Engineering, and Associate Professor Tan Joo Seng from the Nanyang Business School both received the Nanyang Education Awards (University - Silver). Staff members and students were also recognised for their service and humanitarian work. Five faculty members received the Nanyang Education Award (College), while 20 faculty members received the Nanyang Education

Award at the School level. Humanitarian Work awards were given to EcoVenture 2016, an annual youth overseas community involvement programme by the Earthlink Club, as well as Familiar Strangers, a communications campaign by former WKWSCI students. The team behind EcoVenture 2016 installed solar panel systems at primary schools in northern Laos. Familiar Strangers was launched last year by a team of final-year WKWSCI students, showcasing the stories of low-wage migrant workers.

Dr Mark Cenite, Associate Chair of WKWSCI, received the Nanyang Education Award, and was also named Educator of the Year. PHOTO COURTESY OF WKWSCI







The Medical Library, located at the top floor of the building, offers a panoramic view of the heart of Singapore. In addition to medical literature, the library offers literature on Singapore Doctors, Medical Humanities and Medical Art prints.

The Novena Campus will be a cornerstone of the 2030 Novena HealthCity Master plan, with the school forming the heart of the education hub. PHOTOS COURTESY OF LKC SCHOOL OF MEDICINE

A medical marvel

The Anatomy Learning Centre supports students’ learning of the structures in the human body. The learning center holds a resource facility with preserved human bodies as well as 170 bottled specimens from Imperial College London.

Medical students are happy with new Novena campus, but express concerns that they will be further isolated from the general NTU population Wong Jing Hui STUDENTS from the Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine say they are impressed with their new medical campus in Novena, but some are concerned that the building's faroff location will isolate them from the general NTU population. Boasting 20 storeys and spanning over 40,000 square metres, the new Clinical Sciences building is located at Mandalay Road near Tan Tock Seng Hospital, the partner teaching hospital of the Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine. The building opened for lessons in January. It provides a wide range of educational facilities, such as a Centre for Clinical Simulation, while the eighth floor is dedicated to recreational facilities, including a gym and music rooms. Medical students will be posted to Tan Tock Seng Hospital from their third year onwards. Second-year students will be based in the Clinical Sciences Building, while first-year students will have their lessons split between the Clinical Sciences Building and the Experimental Medicine

Building in NTU’s main campus. First-year medical student Timothy Chan, 21, is already looking forward to having most of his lessons in the Clinical Sciences Building next year. “The new building has many different types of rooms dedicated to specific learning purposes. The design is well-thought-out, and the environment seems conducive for learning,” he said. But some of his peers expressed the concern that being away from the main University campus so often would further exclude the medical cohort from the general student population. As they mainly take modules from within their faculty, medical students say they already do not have many opportunities to mix with students from other faculties on a daily basis. “One of the few regrettable things is that the medical cohort may become more isolated from the general NTU cohort,” said Reudi Chan, 21, a second-year medical student. But he was glad for the free shuttle bus services to and from the Novena Campus, which caters to medical students who stay on the University’s main campus.

“Ultimately, it is up to each individual student to decide how involved they want to be in the NTU Community,” added Chan, who chose to continue staying on the main campus. Unlike Chan, second-year medical student Shaun Tan, 22, stopped staying in hall after his first year. He said it is easier to travel to the Novena campus from his home in Dover, as he has lessons there up to four days every week. First-year medical student Louise Lo, 19, acknowledged the concern of greater segregation, but said it was an unavoidable trade-off. “Considering the fact that Tan Tock Seng Hospital is our main teaching hospital, from a practical point of view this is necessary," Lo said. “This will probably compromise our hall life, but it is a sacrifice that has to be made.” The Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine, which first opened in 2013, is a partnership between the University and Imperial College London in England. Undergraduate students go through a five-year course for a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery. The school will see its first doctors graduate in 2018.

Communication Suites, consisting of 10 paired consultation rooms, are available for students to practice their skills in a realistic environment.

The Practical Skills Lab provides students with a realistic experience of clinical skills, such as suturing wounds and stopping uncontrollable bleeding.

reenest all in 016




We know which Halls of Residence are more powerful than others when it comes to sports, but do you know which halls use less power? If you live on campus, here’s how your hall ranks in terms of energy consumption. Hall 10 600 1390

Hall 16 533 1644

Resident Capacity in 2016

Hall 11 600 1512

Hall 3 616 1709

Annual Energy Intensity (kWh/occupant)

Halls 17&18 1250 1665

Hall 8 600 1503

Hall 13 600 1546

Hall 12 600 1605

Hall 15 600 1575

Hall 1 624 1052

Hall 5 500 1345


Hall 14 600 1704

Hall 2 652 977

Hall 6 500 1321 Hall 4 501 1303

Hall 9 600 1295


= 1 YEAR

Hall 7 500 1165

Four hours of air-conditioning uses the same amount of energy spent by a smartphone in a year.

BET YOU NEVER KNEW Insulation material at Hall 4

Two blocks at Hall 4, which receive a lot of solar radiation, are layered with special MagoTherm insulation materials. These help cool down the buildings by up to 4 degree Celsius, which means less need for air-conditioning.

FOR MORE INFORMATION Check out the PowerZee app Look up

Vectors are downloaded from

The solar charging station

Located at the Innovation Centre bus stop, the solar charging station provides a charging platform for students and staff to juice up their mobile phones while waiting for buses. The initiative is a collaboration between NTU Eco Campus, EarthLink NTU and solar panel manufacturer Yingli Solar.



Open your windows early in the morning or in the late evening to naturally cool your room. As a guide, setting your air-conditioning to 26 degree Celsius is enough for thermal comfort. For every degree decreased, the appliance consumes about 7 per cent more energy. Get those blinds down during a hot afternoon to keep radiated heat out of the room. This reduces the amount of energy your air-conditioner needs to cool the room.

Infographic by Tan Xun Yi Toby, Teo Hsin Wei , Eugene Tham











Prepping for finals is no walk in the park, so we've put together a survival guide that's got you covered — whether it's quick fixes in the kitchen or a care package you'll actually use. Here's to walking away from the semester victorious. By Lifestyle writers Claudia Tan and Kezia Tan Graphic by Toby Tan Xun Yi







Alt-Welfare Pack

Final examinations are around the corner and so are the mandatory welfare packs. While freebies are always a great gesture, we are getting sick of the random coffee packets and dubious product samples. Here are some alternatives that might take a little extra effort to put together, but hey — at least you will use them.

Coffee packets vs Tea When it comes to coffee packets, it’s Nescafé or nothing. But even then, taking the cup of joe to stay awake is not always good for you. Coffee may keep the eyes open and brain awake, but the large caffeine composition can cause jitters and affect sleep quality.

Try tea instead — which has a lower amount of caffeine, and contains an amino acid that relaxes your muscles, calms nerves and reduces mental and physical stress. In short, it keeps you calmly awake. According to the BBC, tea drinkers get better sleep at night as well.

Sweets & Chocolates vs Vitamin C gummies A sweet respite from all the bitterness of hard work, these treats are unfortunately packed with too much sugar and cholesterol for you to be snacking on them recklessly throughout the night.

To satisfy that sweet tooth, stock up your finals arsenal with Vitamin C gummies instead. They are great for recharging your stressed-weakened immune system — and they're equally fun to chew.

Sample Products vs Wet Tissues At this point in the semester, no amount of face wash and deodorant samples is going to salvage such stressworn faces.

So just surrender and keep it real — with some good old wet tissue instead. Keep a pack at hand to rejuvenate as you wipe the tears away, or for a quick wipe-down after a study snack. Multi-purpose, cheap and fuss-free — what more could you ask of a weapon for finals?

Soda vs Coconut Water Sugar rushes never end well — you get the sweet rush, and then crash. A bottle of Coca-Cola contains more than 52 grams of sugar — almost double the recommended daily 25 grams of sugar intake.

For the sugary satisfaction without the guilt, try coconut water. It may seem overhyped, but it is packed with minerals that hydrate the body, lower blood pressure and keep the muscles working properly; perfect for replenishing water loss from the sweltering heat.

Magazine vs Essential Oils Let’s face it — magazines are just handy welfare pack fillers. They might prove useful in escaping reality and rewinding once in awhile, but such luxury of time probably is not in the agenda in the sprint towards finals.

Alternatively, relax while studying, with essential oils. Plant-based essential oils are widely used to stimulate brain functions. Pop about 10 drops into a diffuser or a bowl of water for some instant aromatherapy.

Strange Crackers vs Fruit & Vegetable Chips When will biz mags realise nobody dares touch those strange, unbranded crackers? From bizarre flavoured crackers to sketchy Muruku lookalikes, we’ve seen it all. Even if you do enjoy trying out these unconventional treats, they are often bad for the health.

Munch on dried fruit and vegetable chips instead. If the prices of those in the supermarkets are too steep, make your own in the kitchen. Thinly slice the fruits or vegetables and lightly salt them; for the vegetables, add a layer of olive oil. Pop in the oven until they are browned or crisp, and you’ve got yourself a worthwhile crunchy snack.







Beat The Study Crowd Forget the bell curve — finding a place to study is the real competition for students these days. Packed cafes and long queues at public libraries make it hard to snag a seat. But with start-ups offering pay-per-use study areas, a guaranteed space for conducive cramming is now within reach. Here are two places we scoped out, where the table’s reserved just for you.

The Study Area

Desk Next Door

Where: #02-34 539939, 61 Ubi Rd 1 When: 24 hours

Where: 416 Ang Mo Kio Avenue 10 #01-977, 560416 When: 9am-10.30pm Daily


or those who are constantly distracted, The Study Area might be the place for you. Located in Tai Seng, the 30-seater space is set up like an examination hall, complete with desks neatly lined in three columns and a sleek monochromatic themed interior. With the only sounds being the clicking of keyboards and scribbling of pens, you can be ensured hours of uninterrupted mugging. The 24-hour unmanned study space is fully run by an online system. Customers gain access by keying in their session PIN, which they receive upon booking online. There are two booking rates available, $12 for 12-hour access or $18 for 24-hour access. Once you’ve booked a seat, you’re free to come and go within that time period. Each customer gets a personal desk with a table lamp and charging points, and lockers to keep your valuables safe at no extra charge. There is also a water dispenser and complimentary 3-in-1 mixes if you need a caffeine fix. “When you go the library, your seat is gone when you leave for a meal,” said co-founder Mr Clement Wu, 34. “Here, you can take a break with peace of mind.” The Study Area’s first branch, launched in 2015, is just a 5-minute walk from Tai Seng MRT. Food is also easily accessible with a food court and provision shop on the first level of the building, and a mall, Breadtalk IHQ, across the road.

Book early, because the space receives 60 to 100 bookings per week, according to Mr. Wu. Its peak periods are during the weekends but there is no lack of seats for everyone. On weekdays, you just might get the whole place to yourself. The Study Area currently has a second branch in Kovan, and is looking to open up to two more branches within the year in heartland areas or near MRT stations.


f libraries are too stifling for you, the homely Desk Next Door may be a better alternative. Tucked away in the Ang Mo Kio neighbourhood is a quaint little space for you to dive into your books. The place may be located under an HDB building five bus stops away from Ang Mo Kio interchange, but don’t be deceived by its unassuming facade. Desk Next Door is well equipped for a productive day of studying.

Wooden floorboards and cushioned chairs make the space cosy, while facilities like free Wi-Fi and charging points ensure all your studying needs are covered. Printing and lamination services are also available at a fee. Desk Next Door exudes homeliness with little potted succulents and framed motivational quotes. Spacious wooden tables line both sides of the room, and there are even adjustable partitions for maximum privacy. Advance bookings can be made through phone or email. Launched in July last year, Desk Next Door has since gotten a steady flow of six to eight customers a day, and has become a go-to even for those who live beyond the vicinity, said owner Mr Tan En Wei. The space, which seats 18, welcome walkins as there are more than enough seats to go around. Inspired by his experience of not having a proper study space when he was a polytechnic student, the 24-year-old now dedicates his time fully to Desk Next Door. Mr Tan is also awaiting HDB’s approval for Desk Next Door to operate 24 hours to better cater to customers’ needs. “As it is still a relatively new start up, I am looking at ways to improve this place,” said Mr. Tan. With the two start-ups leading the way for pay-per-use study spaces, there are no more excuses not to hit the books.



NO SW Tuna Wrap

S’mores Sandwich

Quick meals don’t have to be unhealthy. Fill your stomach with this nutritious and tasty dish.

Who says you can only enjoy marshmallows at barbeques or over a campfire? Make your very own s’mores with a few simple steps at home.

Preparation time: 5 minutes

Preparation time: 5 minutes

Ingredients: 2 tablespoons of tuna 2 big pieces of lettuce 1 tablespoon of almonds 1 tablespoon of raisins 1 slice of tortilla wrap

Ingredients: 1 bar of milk chocolate of your choice 1 packet of digestive biscuits Marshmallows (as many as you like!)

Serves 1 wrap

Directions: 1. Melt the chocolate at medium heat in a microwave-safe bowl for a minute 2. Spread the melted chocolate on the digestive biscuits 3. Top with marshmallows and microwave for 30 seconds 4. Place a second digestive biscuit on top 5. Bite into the sandwich as the marshmallows melt in your mouth

Directions: 1. Mix the tuna, almonds and raisins in a bowl 2. Place the lettuce on the tortilla and spread the mixture evenly on top 3. Fold the sides of the wrap firmly 4. Roll it up tight 5. Let the sweet and savoury take over your senses TIP: Buy wholemeal tortilla and low-fat tuna for a healthier meal

Serves 5 S’mores sandwiches

TIP: For a healthier snack, replace marshmallows with diced strawberries or sliced bananas

Tired of instant noodles to fuel y sessions? Here are four quick a midnight cravings. All it takes a so you’re covered whether you







you through late-night mugging and easy recipes to satisfy your are a few simple ingredients — u’re working in hall or at home.

Mac and Cheese

Nutella Fudge

Need carbs for an energy boost? This microwaved mac ‘n’ cheese recipe is much less of a hassle than boiling a pot of pasta the old-fashioned way.

For a sinfully good kick with an all-time favourite, try the hazelnut chocolate spread in bite-sized, snack form.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes

Preparation time: 5 minutes

Ingredients: 1/3 cup pasta 1/2 cup water 1/4 cup milk 1/2 cup cheddar cheese, shredded 1/2 tablespoon salted butter

Ingredients: 1/2 cup Nutella 3 tablespoons of salted butter ¾ cups of walnuts and almonds (or as much as you like)

Serves 1 bowl Directions: 1. Combine the pasta and water in a bowl and microwave on high for a minute. Give it a quick stir and repeat four times, totalling four minutes. 2. Add in room temperature butter 3. Add in cheddar cheese (sliced cheese works too!) 4. Add in milk and stir thoroughly before microwaving once more at high temperature for a minute 5. Top with more cheese and some pepper. Enjoy!

Directions: 1. Melt the Nutella and butter over medium heat for a minute and stir until smooth 2. Add the nuts and stir until evenly coated 3. Pour the fudge and nut mixture into a bowl lined with aluminium foil. Tap the bowl on the table to set the fudge 4. Refrigerate for at least four hours (While waiting, head back to the books!) 5. Cut the now solidified fudge into bite-sized pieces, top with more nuts, and your Nutella Fudge is ready to serve

Tip: Use full cream milk for a richer flavour, or skip the butter and use low-fat milk for a healthier option.

Tip: For the rare birds who don’t like Nutella, Ovomaltine or peanut butter work too.

Serves about 6 mini fudges.

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14 -15 DAPPER


ADM Name: Kimberlyn Lee

Age: 22 Sch/Yr: ADM/ Y4 Top: Uniqlo Bottom: Uniqlo Shoes: Dr Martens Accessories: Japanese online store Style: Pretentious

Dapper brings you seven fashionable students spotted on campus who debunk the myth that NTU students are the worst dressed of the lot.


CANTEEN B Name: Muhammad Hidayat

bin Abdul Khalid Age: 25 Sch/Yr: HSS/ Y4 Top: Korea Shirt: Korea Bottom: Topman Shoes: Nike Bag: School project Watch: Fossil Style: A pop of colour

ADM Name: Iskandar Ruhaizat

Age: 24 Sch/Yr: ADM/ Y2 Top: Giordano Cardigan: Jason Wu Bottom: Blue culottes (Today Tomorrow Forever) Shoes: Wraparound cut-out shoes (Depression) Style: Eclectic androgene




CHRONICLE 08 HSS FOYER Name: Ayana Aspembitova

Age: 25 Sch/Yr: SPMS PHD/ Y1 Dress: Friend’s boutique in Russia Shoes: Charles & Keith Bag: Russia Style: Smart casual

THE HIVE Name: Yu Shan

Age: 25 Sch/Yr: HSS/ Y4 Top: Taobao Bottom: Taiwan Night market Shoes: Charles & Keith Bag: Charles & Keith Earrings: China Style: Neat and smart

NEWSPLEX Name: Matilda Aquila Chia Age: 20 Sch/Yr: WKWSCI/ Y2 Top: Mum’s Outerwear: Thrift shop Bottom: Bugis Pouch: TYPO Bag: Taobao Necklace: Gifted Style: Penchant for all things furry, colourful and glittery.

WKW Name: Irwin Tan

Age: 23 Sch/Yr: WKWSCI/ Y1 Top: Topman Shirt: Primark Bottom: ASOS Shoes: Converse Hat: Scape Bracelets: H&M Style: Casual with a hint of style




Emily gears up for a race in her driver’s suit inside the Nanyang Venture 9, an electric-powered race car designed and built by a research team from the School of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering.


hen Emily Fatima Yunan, 21, first caught sight of Nanyang Venture, Singapore’s first 3D printed electric-powered car at the School of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering (MAE), she immediately realized it is a project she wanted to join. She was just a first-year MAE student then, but Emily did not hesitate to approach Associate Professor Ng Heong Wah to ask if she can join his research team. The journey was anything but easy. It took her a year to master the sophisticated mechanisms of an electric-powered car by observing her seniors design and build innovative cars. But in March, the petite second-year student not only took part in improving earlier car designs, she also drove the electric car her team had built, the Nanyang Venture 9 (NV-IX), in a competitive race. Her team ranked eighth out of 16 teams at the Shell EcoMarathon Asia, an annual race involving energy-efficient

“I’ve never felt disadvantaged as a girl. Sometimes, I won’t be able to carry as heavy a load like [the males, but] other than that it’s okay.” Emily Fatima Yunan, 21 Second-year MAE Student and innovative cars from tertiary institutions across Asia. It was held at the Changi Exhibition Centre on 15-19 Mar. Emily is only the second female driver to represent NTU since the University started joining the competition in 2016. “I’ve never felt disadvantaged as a girl,” said Emily, who was one of only two females in the team of 16 NTU students.

“Sometimes, I won’t be able to carry as heavy a load like (the males, but) other than that it’s okay.” For instance, having a small frame — she weighs 41kg and is 147cm tall — enabled her to manoeuvre inside the car’s small compartment easily. Most of the nitty-gritty work that goes into building the Nanyang Venture happens in an obscure workshop nestled within the North Spine. That is where the team brainstorms ideas to enhance the innovativeness and performance of the car. Test runs are then scheduled occasionally for Emily to practise behind the wheel. NTU placed third in last year’s race. While the team did not manage to repeat the feat this year, Emily hopes that next year’s team will raise the bar. “There will always be uncertainties during the competition,” she said. “But fret not, fight on, up is the only way forward.”





TOP LEFT: Emily helps Joandy Leonata Pratama, 20-year-old second year MAE student, solder the battery used for the race car. TOP MIDDLE: Maximising her petite frame, Emily enters the trunk of the NV-IX to complete all the wirings for the circuit boards in the race car. TOP RIGHT: Due to the aerodynamic requirement of the NV-IX, the race car is small and compact. Emily often helps to fix small glitches and to tighten the nut. MIDDLE: Emily drives the NV-IX on the race course at the Shell Eco-Marathon Asia on 18 Mar. Each race car had five trials and nine laps on the track, with the best timing taken for the final assessement. BOTTOM: The MAE team behind the Nanyang Venture 9, led by Associate Professor Ng Heong Wah (extreme left).


Zika return a reminder not to let our guards down The Zika virus made its return to the headlines last week after two locally transmitted cases were confirmed at Simon Place in Hougang, the first cluster reported this year. The previous cluster was closed back in December, though there have been six isolated cases of Zika this year. While that shows that the virus is largely kept under control, it also means that it still lingers in Singapore. There is always the possibility of transmission, and it would not come as a surprise should NTU witness its first Zika case any time soon. Experts have stated that NTU’s population density and concentration of possible mosquito breeding sites make it a high risk area for infections, as earlier reported by the Nanyang Chronicle last October. NTU also has a history of being in close proximity to dengue fever clusters. Its Jalan Bahar entrance is right beside the Westwood and Jurong West Street 74 neighbourhoods, part of Jurong West — the biggest cluster in Singapore during the 2013 dengue fever outbreak. While the University ramped

up its anti-mosquito measures last October as a precaution, the newly-emerged cluster shows that we can ill afford to let our guards down. Students, particularly those living on campus, can play their part together. We can take inspiration from the community spirit demonstrated by the two infected Simon Place residents who warned their pregnant neighbours as soon as they learnt of their Zika diagnosis. Individual precautions should be part of a collective effort in the battle against Zika. As the University fogs the premises, individuals must continue to take precautions like getting rid of stagnant water, or even better, reminding your neighbours to do so as well. Students should inform the University’s Office of Health and Safety about any mosquito hotspots. You should also consult a doctor should you or a friend be suffering from known Zika symptoms. With the warmer and wetter June period — prime mosquito breeding conditions — coming up in two months, there is no space for complacency.









Yeo Kai Wen

Nicholas Tan

Justin Kor Louisa Tang Sharanya Pillai


Sean Loo

Paige Lim

Valerie Lay Zheng Juncen





Amanda Chai

Aiswarya Devi

Toby Tan Xun Yi Sheena Wong Vanessa Tan

A students’ newspaper published by the Wee Kim Wee School of Communication and Information (WKWSCI) Nanyang Technological University 31 Nanyang Link, Singapore 637718 Tel: 6790 6446

Febriliani Tan Ryan Tan


FACULTY ADVISORS Edson Tandoc Zakaria Zainal

Unsigned editorials represent the majority view of the editorial board of The Chronicle and do not necessarily reflect the policies or views of Nanyang Technological University, its employees, the students or the Council of the University.


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Building networks of friendships


Aiswarya Devi Opinion Editor


s university students, one of the biggest adventures that awaits us in our final year is the graduation trip. For most of us, the graduation trip is almost a rite of passage as we segue into life as a working adult. It is our one last attempt to bask in the joys of a carefree life. As I was pondering on this momentous trip recently, something occurred to me. I was unsure of who of the many students graduating with me I would like to travel with. It is commonly acknowledged that travelling together requires mutual trust and the capacity to lean on one another. The Huffington Post even has a “travel compatibility” quiz that lets readers check if they are vacationing with the right friend. In my four years of university, I have made many friends. Yet, there is not a single person that I could think of taking this momentous journey with. And then it hit me. From the moment we start out as freshmen, we are constantly seeking to build relationships that are beneficial. Relationships that could lend us a helping hand in tutorials, lead to great internships and land us the perfect job. We term this process “networking”. My best friend and I met in secondary school. We bonded over a mutual love for chocolate. Since

then, our friendship has seen us through acne, horrifying exam results, boys and so much more. When I was in my second year of university, she went overseas to pursue further education. It was the loneliest I have ever felt. Although I have been surrounded by many friends in university, I feel that I lack the companionship that my best friend could provide. My friendships in university have been part of “networking”. Here, I do not mean to blame networking for my loneliness. Instead, I am simply observing a phenomenon that most of my friends have experienced too. In our eagerness to make beneficial relationships, many of us overlook forging genuine, deep friendships. We hang out in large groups of friends. We share stories and laughter. However, these individuals are ultimately mere acquaintances. Over the past four years, I have spent countless hours among large groups of strangers that I call friends. We take part in co-curricular activities together, working for a common cause. We even band together in cold tutorial rooms, to study for impending finals. We stick together in large groups until the end of the semester — until it is mutually beneficial to us. And then we disperse. We spend our semester breaks with minimal contact — other than the occasional likes on Facebook or Instagram. Social networking sites

become the basis of our friendships. As we mature from freshmen to seniors, how we use social networking sites also changes. These sites thus become less of a platform to keep in touch with one another, and more of a database of connections we turn to for favours. Many people who write for online blogs, including my friends and I, often use Facebook to source for interviewees or other related information. It is not uncommon for me to come across Facebook statuses that read “Anyone who has used the latest iPhone, please PM. Writing a story”. In the digital age, our networks have become one of our greatest resources. And we strive hard to build them. Four years of university seems to be barely enough to strengthen this resource. So we do not waste time. We hesitate to spend time making friendships that are not beneficial — that do not help us forge a path to our future careers. Friendships in university do not begin with mutual understanding, but mutual benefits. And as I reflect, I wonder if I have lost out on making true friendships because of my overzealous attempts to network. Perhaps, somewhere among the huge groups of friends that I was attempting to add to my growing network of acquaintances, I may have overlooked that one great friend that I could be travelling with for my graduation trip.


Losing is not a reason to quit Sean Loo (in red) spars with national teammate Lim Zi Xyan (in blue)

Sean Loo Sports Editor


y Welsh opponent yanked down on my neck and grabbed my right leg, as I struggled to maintain my balance, desperately hopping around on my free leg. Inevitably, my opponent pivoted with his right leg, lifted my hapless body and drove me, together with my dreams of qualifying for the quarter finals, into the mat. The referee signalled two points for the opponent and blew his whistle, bringing the match to an end. I gritted my teeth and trudged off the mat in disappointment. For the fourth time that morning, in a span of three hours, I was on the wrong end of a proper trouncing on home soil and was eliminated from the 2016 Commonwealth Wrestling Championships on 7 Nov. I finished at the bottom of my pool — losing to opponents from Pakistan, India, Australia and Wales (United Kingdom). As a national wrestler, I carry around a little embarrassing secret: I have yet to taste victory while representing my country.

Facing failures

It was my first-ever international competition, and I did not even manage to score a single point in my four matches, conceding an astounding 41 points in the process. In wrestling, a takedown earns the wrestler two or four points, while pushing the opponent out of the competition area earns a wrestler one point. My second attempt did not go any better. In January, I forked out

S$800, skipped two days of school, and travelled down to Melbourne to participate in the Maribyrnong Open. A strong showing in the competition would greatly boost the chances of the Singapore National Olympic Council (SNOC) to send a representative for the 2018 Commonwealth Games in that particular weight category. This meant that I had to win. However, less than three minutes into my opening match, I faced a disappointing loss to an Australian state (non-national team) wrestler. As the tournament followed a knockout system, my quick defeat meant an early elimination and another failure on the global stage. To make matters worst, I also aggravated my existing neck injury, forcing me to sit out of training for four months. I was crushed. It was at this moment where leaving wrestling seemed like a very real and attractive option. I had to make many sacrifices as an athlete, from planning my class schedules, constantly watching my diet and painfully limiting the intake of my favourite drink “teh peng” (iced milk tea), to having to reject meeting friends for supper. After all, people only remember the winners. As these thoughts swirled around my head, I recalled the first time I joined the sport.

Starting out

When I first started wrestling some six years ago, I was weak, fat, unfit and inflexible — lacking in any form of athleticism. I only took up wrestling to fulfil one of the graduation requirements of the International Baccalaureate

Diploma (an ALevel equivalent examination), which requires candidates to participate in physical activities such as sports. My first training went terribly. Besides being a throwing dummy for my teammates, I was also behind my teammates when it came to strength and conditioning. I remember gasping for air while running circuits around the field only to see teammates effortlessly sprint pass, lapping me. At the end of the session, my arms and legs were aching and I could barely hear my coach’s debrief over my loud panting. I was just glad to make it through without quitting. But I made progress over the next practices by putting in extra hours of cardiovascular and strength exercises after each session.

I felt fitter and stronger. I was no longer lapped by my teammates in the weekly runs around the training room. I was no longer an easy target for teammates who wanted a relaxing practice match. I felt my life being transformed by the discipline that wrestling inculcated in me. It was at this point when I started to feel passion for the sport. From monitoring my daily diet (wrestlers compete in different weight categories; I compete in the 65kg category) to managing my time, I learnt to avoid cutting corners as a “do only the minimum required” attitude can create many more problems in the long run. And the feeling of throwing and gaining control of my opponent was fulfilling — knowing that my efforts in practice were paying off. I found myself being able to score takedowns on teammates whose legs I could not even touch when I first started wrestling. I may not be the best wrestler in the training room, but I take pride in trying my best and giving anyone a good match.

In the span of six years, I have improved by leaps and bounds. As I reflected on my sporting journey, and reflected on my progress, I felt that I had simply put in too much effort to give up. Thus, I came to a decision: I would not quit wrestling.

Future goals

This year, I have set for myself the goal of breaking my winless streak at the international level, starting with another regional tournament in Australia this June. In the long run, I aim to qualify and win a medal in the 2019 South East Asian Games. My international failures reminded me of one thing: no matter how hard I think I am training, my opponents are probably training even harder. I will need to pull up my socks, put on my wrestling shoes, get onto the mat and train harder. Regardless of whether I meet these goals, one thing is certain — I will not throw in the towel. Even if I were to remain winless in the international level, I plan to continue wrestling as long as my body can hold out.

No IHG for North Hill halls? No problem Tanjong Hall emerged tops in the first and only Inter-North Hill Games held last month. The competition, which took place from 6 to 8 Mar, saw residents from Binjal, Tanjong and Banyan Halls compete in three sports — basketball, badminton and soccer. Tanjong Hall triumphed in all three sports and clinched the overall champion trophy. Binjal Hall took second place while Banyan Hall placed third. In an email to the Nanyang Chronicle, Tanjong Hall president Ahmad Farid said the three sports were chosen due to their popularity among residents at North Hill. Tanjong Hall’s sports secretary Zachary Teo said the Games were organised in place of this year’s Inter-Hall Games (IHG), which the North Hill halls did not participate in.

Tanjong Hall (in blue) overcame Binjal and Banyan Halls to emerge top in soccer. PHOTO COURTESY OF SIM LEE LENG

“The North Hill halls were nowhere near full occupation, so it was tough for the three halls to form and send teams to participate in this year’s IHG,” said Teo, a first-

year student from the Nanyang Business School. But that will change next year, he added, when the halls are fully occupied.

The Nanyang Chronicle Vol 23 Issue 08  
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