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Student Testimonials

​​​​“​HSS has exceeded my expectations. Foremost of all, the excellent roster of faculty not only helped me deepen my knowledge but also allowed me to focus on my area of expertise and identify my niche in academia. Their passion for teaching and dedication to ​their respective researches is highly contagious – it is a privilege to be mentored by them. Second, as a student leader, I can attest to the ardent commitment of the staff and administrators to provide students with the necessary resources to ensure optimal academic and social experience. In particular, the Graduate Student Office, through the help of student representatives, constantly looks for new ways to improve and foster stimulating environment for graduate students. Finally, through the school’s support, I was able to attend an exchange program in Japan, a summer school in China, and an international conference in the United Kingdom. I was also able to attend (not once but twice!) the St. Gallen Symposium in Switzerland – a global gathering of today’s political and economic leaders and highly selected representatives from the youth. Through these events, I was able to expand my network, discuss relevant issues and debates with people from different backgrounds, and learn from diverse perspectives and cultures. Simply put, HSS has afforded me the opportunity to expand my horizon and accumulate varied learning experiences in Singapore and across the globe. After four years of graduate student life, I am confident to say that HSS has equipped me for a successful academic career ahead.”

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​Ms Espena Darlene Machell De Leon
History, PhD, Class of 2012
Current Student ​​


​“Life as a graduate student in HSS has been immensely fulfilling. Within an academic year, I have had the opportunity to present in two overseas conferences and symposiums, in the United Kingdom in 2015 and Japan in 2016. Through HSS, I got to interact with scholars from different intellectual backgrounds, exp​​lore new countries, gain new cultural perspectives. I am also currently collaborating with two other HSS student editors on a book, this is how you walk on the moon. It is an anthology of experimental fiction that taps on both emerging and ​experienced voices from people all around Singapore (and a few from elsewhere). I am grateful to HSS for all these opportunities to broaden my horizons, and to have surrounded me with passionate, dedicated professors and students, from whom I draw a good deal of strength and inspiration.”​

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Mr Wong Wen Pu
English, MA, Class of 2015
Current Stude​nt ​​

“The journey to my PhD goes beyond the academic milestone. While there is enrichment in knowledge, the biggest gain for me is the the change in attitude towards all areas of my life. The diligence required in pursuing my research has instilled in me the need to establish facts, and to remain objective in approaching any matter. This has a direct bearing in my handling of news, which is my job.

On another level, the pursuit of my degree has also impressed on me the need to have an open mind, and to see things beyond the surface. Research work has taught me that there are many layers and dimensions to many aspects of our lives. And very importantly, the perspective of an issue can vary greatly depending on one's position. That awareness has reinforced the need to be less judgemental, and to be more analytical and understanding.

In sum, I would say the pursuit of higher studies goes beyond the academic milestone. It has become a way of life. “


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Dr Zhang Haijie
Chinese, PhD, Class of 2005
Alumnus​