Twenty glorious years in advancing Singapore’s education and research in Food Science and Technology
Year 2019 shall be very special for the NUS Food Science and Technology (FST) Programme: we turn to 20!
To commemorate this significant milestone, NUS-FST is launching a series of events including Charity Golf, Appreciation Dinner, International Scientific Conference, etc. An endowment account has also been initiated to support financially needy students to unleash their potential, empowering our mission to nurture future leaders.
At the doorstep of the new millennium, NUS-FST was established in 1999 as Singapore’s first university degree programme in Food Science and Technology, aiming to serve the special need of providing high quality manpower for the rapidly growing modern food industry of the 21st century in the country. With an annual turnover of S$10.3 billion in 2016, the food manufacturing industry remains as one of the most fundamental and critical sectors in Singapore’s fast growing economy.
Since its establishment, the FST Programme has been receiving strong support from both government organisations and the industry, e.g. AVA, EDB, HSA, HPB, NEA, EnterpriseSingapore, Abbott, Firmenich, F&N, Givaudan, Ingredion, Kerry, KH Roberts, Kikkoman, Nestle, QAF. These supports are critical to NUS-FST’s steady growth and excelling. Various student scholarships and prizes have been set up from the industrial partners’ generous supports. Currently, our Bachelor of Science (Food Science and Technology) and Bachelor of Science (Honours) (Food Science and Technology) are the only degrees in Singapore that have been certified by the International Union of Food Science and Technology (IUFoST), the top global scientific organisation for Food Science and Technology. Over the years, our graduates have proven to be popular, having one of the highest employment rates among university courses and making valuable contributions to the industry and the nation.
Meanwhile, the education programme has been expanding constantly. For example, a second major in Food Science was introduced in 2017 and a coursework Master of Science programme started in August 2018. In line with the Industry Transformation Map by SkillsFuture Singapore (SSG), we provide the upgrading of skills and knowledge to professionalise and strengthen the capabilities of the food sector through the offering of modules in the NUS Lifelong Learners (NUS L3) programme, NUS CET500 suite of courses, graduate certificates and graduate diploma programme.
Members of the FST Programme strive to excel in teaching and research to make the Programme a centre of excellence in food science and technology by providing well trained graduates and conducting high quality research of international impact. Our PhD graduates have won the prestigious biennial IUFoST Young Scientist Awards (which are each time awarded to 6 to 8 awardees through global nomination and competition) 6 times consecutively since 2008. The research thesis topics of the 6 Young Scientist Awardees from NUS-FST ranged from food chemistry, food microbiology, food safety, to food engineering.
NUS-FST has also been successful in nurturing the entrepreneurship spirit of not only its graduates but also its staff. A number of companies have been established by the NUS-FST alumni, current students as well as some staff members. Meanwhile, we have been offering our strong support to local start-ups and SMEs in increasing their productivity and competitiveness.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank our alumni, collaborators, donors, and friends who have given their relentless supports to our journey so far and at the same time, also to appeal for your continuous support to the 20th Anniversary commemorative activities and events.