A life-changing event

In the final instalment of our three-part special, Hong Shan Min tells us why the SIM-LSE Summer School was such an eye-opening experience
Hong Shan Min
BSc Economics and Finance student, Hong Shan Min
One of the highlights of my stay at LSE was attending public lectures where I got to hear some of the most influential figures in the field of social sciences speak about their views on today’s economy

Many seniors and peers have often reminded me of the importance of internships or gaining relevant work experience during the summer holidays. They often highlight and quote the advantages that such work experience could bring in the future. Despite that, I decided to forgo a few internship opportunities this summer for the renowned summer abroad program organized by The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE).

Knowing that it was going to be my last holiday before I graduate, I wanted to do something that would allow me to gain the most out of my student life. Therefore, I was determined to sign up for this program to gain invaluable experience from learning in a different environment. I am extremely thankful to SIM for giving me a chance to be a part of this program and ever since that decision was made, I have never looked back.

London, known for its strength in arts and education, is a leading global city with a diverse range of cultures and people. It houses the world’s leading financial businesses and schools, and also concurrently acts as the heart of Britain. Therefore, there isn’t another place that an economics and finance student like me could benefit more from.

“Apart from learning to be independent, I had the luxury of attending many enriching tutorials and lectures, which involved countless discussions, debates and interactions that allowed one to question almost every concept and as a result, encouraged critical thinking.”

Hong Shan Min outside LSE

Attending the LSE summer abroad program has been a life-changing event for me. Apart from learning to be independent, I had the luxury of attending many enriching tutorials and lectures, which involved countless discussions, debates and interactions that allowed one to question almost every concept and as a result, encouraged critical thinking. Complementing the tutorials and lectures were students from all over the world. This allowed me to appreciate and understand the varying perspectives on different subject matters.

One of the highlights of my stay at LSE was attending public lectures where I got to hear some of the most influential figures in the field of social sciences speak about their views on today’s economy. The intense and intellectual debates were indeed an eye-opener.

The social events organized by the school presented me with many opportunities and encouraged me to socialize with students that were also on exchange or from LSE. Looking back at the program, the new friends that I made included students and lecturers from Norway, Australia, America, Canada, Malaysia, Thailand, Taiwan and Africa. I realized these events subtly honed my participation skills and made me more sociable. This definitely made my summer abroad program with LSE more rewarding.

“The students from SIM were fun, driven and supportive. Having such peers was certainly one of the many reasons that made this summer abroad program at LSE an enjoyable and unforgettable experience.”

SIM-LSE Summer School students

Even though it was a global summer program, we managed to form an Asian student group which consisted largely of students from Singapore (SIM, SMU) and other students from Malaysia, Thailand, Taiwan and Australia. It was obvious that SIM chose a group of dedicated students to represent SIM for this program, as the students from SIM were fun, driven and supportive. This formed a group that had a perfect balance of intense studying and having fun. This formula resulted in creating a closely knit group that couldn’t bear to part when the program ended. Having such peers was certainly one of the many reasons that made this summer abroad program at LSE an enjoyable and unforgettable experience.

Looking back at this summer abroad experience, I realized that although doing well in the tests affirmed that I had learnt new things, it was not the only thing that made my time spent in LSE fruitful. It was a combination of going to school to learn new things, making new friends every day, group studying, traveling and being present through every moment of my time spent in LSE that made me learn and appreciate my life and made every moment beautiful.

“Attending this summer abroad program was one of the greatest opportunities I have received at SIM and I would strongly encourage all students to participate in this program.”

Attending this summer abroad program was one of the greatest opportunities I have received at SIM and I would strongly encourage all students to participate in this program. This program is not only about studying overseas – it is one of the greatest ways to make lifelong friends or learn and appreciate the culture of different countries in the world. And, after three weeks, becoming someone who will definitely look forward to seeing the world again.