Singapore’s Universities: Immoral students or incompetent management?

By Celia Lim

Almost every year, we hear about members of the public chastising the degrading and offensive orientation activities put up by our local institutes of higher learning in welcoming their new students. The activities were organised by senior students of the institutes and they seemed to be getting more degrading and offensive year after year!

What has re-enacting an incestuous rape scene got to do with the goals of student orientation? In what way having a group of men simulating ejaculations on a girl’s face served the objectives of the orientation camp?

Those activities were not only humiliating and insulting, they were criminal in nature! It suggests the kind of evil things the university’s senior students are obsessed with! Is this the kind of stuff that remain stuck in students’ minds after having studied in the university for a couple of years?

Or perhaps, it is the kind of university that attracts such students to study there? As specialists in crime investigation know too well : certain locations attract certain kinds of illegal trades; and certain businesses attract certain type of people!

Each time when public chastisement got too loud, management of the university or institute would provide lame excuses, play down the issues, recite the school’s SOP to journalists, shifting the blame to both senior and new students, make empty promises to investigate and pay lip-service to solutions! And come next year, the public hears the same, if not worse, complaints of bullying, sexual harassment and offensive acts!

It seemed our universities and institutes of higher learning not only have students with questionable moral qualities, their management’s competence, diligence and interests in student safety are questionable too!

This article first appeared on TR Emeritus. It is reproduced with permission.


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