Thursday, September 15, 2005

Wandering Scholar(s)

Two months ago, Mr Wang blogged about a PSC scholar wannabe, and how his thoughts (and most likely that also of his peers in the premier junior college in the Bishan-AMK area) is a slap in the face for the local universities' aspirations to become world-class institutions.

Today I read in a Technology magazine about an ex-President's cum Lee Kuan Yew Scholar being selected by a distinguished panel of judges as one of the top technology innovators under age 35 (as of October 1, 2005). Now, don't get me wrong. She definitely did Singapore proud, although I was surprised at her in taking up a faculty position at Caltech. I was expecting her to return to NUS or NTU as a member of the teaching/research staff.

It was only last week that the Economist had published a slew of articles on the state of global higher education. Competition for talent is now global; if you are one, the world will be your oyster, PSC scholar or not.

"Better brain drain than brain in the drain." - Rajiv Gandhi (1944 - 1991), late Prime Minister of India

I have provided a copy of the Economist article (in pdf format) in case anyone had missed last week's issue.

Tracey Ho
Good job, Tracey!


Kevin said...

Forgive my childishness, but Tracey looks "hawt"... possessing both beauty and brains (I'm a nerd). Local talent eludes Singapore once again, for besides academia, same always goes for the music scene. I however have neither brawn nor brains, so I guess my loss is Singapore's gain :P

vivienne said...

Why am I not surprised by her choice?

In my opinion, the biggest weakness for career development as a scientist in Singapore is probably due to her physical size, population and of course engineering on various levels which result in a somewhat limited scope of research and options. Well, options (especially in your postdoc years) are definitely good in the sense that you could study a problem from whichever angle you want as well as having the opportunity to work for the best person in the field.

Obviously, whether you feel limited in your career development in Singapore all depends on what you want to do. It’s not true in every situation.