SMU holds in-person Commencement ceremonies to celebrate the graduation of the Class of 2021

The University’s 18th and largest batch of graduates since its establishment in 2000

Singapore, 7 January 2022 (Friday) – Singapore Management University (SMU) kicked off six days of graduation celebration for the Class of 2021 today at the Opening Ceremony of SMU Commencement 2021. The in-person ceremony, which was graced by Guest-of-Honour Mr Lawrence Wong, Minister for Finance, was held on SMU campus today with 258 persons in attendance. They include SMU senior management, faculty, guests, graduates, award winners, as well as family of the graduates.

The physical ceremonies are organised following the Virtual Commencement which was held for the Class of 2021 in August last year in light of the Covid-19 situation.

The 2978-strong Class of 2021 comprises 1908 Bachelor’s degree graduates, 1009 Master’s degree and Juris Doctor degree graduates, and 61 Doctorate degree graduates. Among the Bachelor’s degree graduates, 52 of them will be receiving double degrees. Together, they represent SMU’s 18th and largest batch of graduates since the University was established in 2000.

This year, SMU will be presenting pioneer graduates from the following programmes:

  • BSc (Information Systems) Smart-City Management and Technology major: 47
  • Master of Science in Computing: 8
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Business (Operations Management): 6

Mr Darien The Chun Yiu, who graduates from the Yong Pung How School of Law, was named the Kwek Hong Png Valedictorian and SPH Valedictorian. Mr Lucas Ethan Tiong Jun Wei from the School of Social Sciences was named the SMU Salutatorian. Both stood out with their outstanding leadership skills, significant contributions to co-curricular activities and the community-at-large, good character records and excellent academic results (both achieved Summa Cum Laude).

In his Welcome Remarks, SMU Chairman Mr Ho Kwon Ping said, “Completing your programmes, taking exams and seeking to commence your careers during a period of unprecedented disruption tested the resilience, resourcefulness and creativity that SMU had sought to develop in you. We believe in you, wish you all the very best, and know you will continue to fly the SMU flag high and with honour.

“For all of you, this pandemic has been a generation defining moment. The whole world will look back in awe one day at how your generation showed strength and courage. The pandemic is something that has profoundly affected every person entering adulthood around the world at this moment in time. Through this you have developed and proven your resilience, adaptability and creativity in overcoming the novel challenges resulting from this novel coronavirus.”

In her remarks to the graduates, SMU President Professor Lily Kong said “At SMU you approached learning through a variety of disciplines; you applied your knowledge to real-world problems in your public, private and non-profit sector internships; and you had opportunities to learn about cultures and practices around the globe. SMU’s holistic education shaped you into a well-rounded individual with broad-based learning and deep knowledge in your area of specialisation, a global outlook and a desire to make a meaningful impact in the world.

“You were challenged and you committed yourself in a wide range of co-curricular and community service activities. In true SMU spirit, you pursued your dreams, took risks, dared to fail and learned to succeed with grace. Whether you studied here as an undergraduate or postgraduate, you grew and matured as an individual who will seize the initiative, assume the obligations of leadership and take responsibility for your actions.”

Reminding the graduates that education is a lifelong process, Prof Kong added “You have learnt how to learn. This has prepared you for a successful career in which you are already having to adapt to the demands of an ever-changing world.  You will continue to have to adapt, through lifelong learning as well as seizing and creating opportunities. You will need to constantly hone your skills and upgrade your knowledge. We hope that you will continue your lifelong education journey with us, through our rapidly increasing range of postgraduate, executive and professional programmes and the SMU Academy.

Each year at the Commencement ceremony, SMU also recognises students from each School who have embraced the values of Commitment, Integrity, Responsibility, Collegiality, Leadership and Excellence with the CIRCLE Awards.  Winners of the CIRCLE Awards are also distinguished by their all-round excellence in Student Life, Student Leadership, Community Service and Academic Studies. They have been actively involved in serving and giving back to SMU and the community at large. In addition, they have demonstrated leadership abilities, are upright in character, and well-respected by peers, staff, and faculty.