Passing of Former President Mr S R Nathan

The Ministry of Education (MOE) would like to offer our deepest condolences to Mrs Nathan and her family.

2. Mr Nathan made significant contributions to the university sector. He previously served as Chancellor of the National University of Singapore (NUS) and the Nanyang Technological University (NTU), and Patron of the Singapore Management University (SMU). He was also a Senior Distinguished Fellow at SMU’s School of Social Sciences, and at NTU’s S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, where he served as Director when it was founded as the Institute of Defence and Strategic Studies in 1996. Mr Nathan also strongly believed in the importance of hard work and education. He established the S. R. Nathan Education Upliftment Fund in 2011, which has helped many financially needy students at the polytechnics and the Institute of Technical Education.

3. Our universities have recognised Mr Nathan’s contributions to Singapore and to education in Singapore. He was awarded the Doctor of Letters by NTU in 2011, NUS in 2012, and SMU in 2014. NUS launched the S. R. Nathan Professorship in Social Work in 2012, which was named in honour of him for his passion in social work education and his contributions to the advancement of society. In 2013, the Institute of Policy Studies established the S. R. Nathan Fellowship for the Study of Singapore, as a tribute to his contributions to Singapore. Mr Nathan was also conferred the Lifetime Achievement award by NUS in 2015. His legacy will live on and benefit generations of youth.

4. Mr Nathan was a firm believer in the importance of building an inclusive society, where no one is left behind even as society progressed. He recognised that students with special educational needs would benefit from equal opportunities to education. In his interactions with youth, Mr Nathan emphasised the values of gratitude and kindness, and encouraged them to be proactive and make meaningful contributions back to society.

5. Mr Nathan is a fine example to all of us, and the youth today can learn much from his life. He will be missed by all Singaporeans.

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