It was announced yesterday that the Faculty of Engineering and the School of Design and Environment (SDE) will merge to form the College of Design and Engineering (CDE) to offer a new model of interdisciplinary education that leverages the synergy between the two converging fields.
Top photo credit: Rory Gardiner
Professor Aaron Thean, current Dean of NUS Faculty of Engineering, has been appointed the Dean-Designate of CDE. He will lead the merger of the two schools to form the new CDE, which is expected to be officially launched in November 2021. Students who are currently enrolled in the two schools will seamlessly transit into the CDE with effect from 1 January 2022.
NUS Senior Deputy President and Provost Professor Ho Teck Hua said: “In the converging fields of engineering and design, professionals must be able to frame problems, innovate, build and realise their ideas into solutions that are practical, functional and appealing. This requires thinking and behaviour that reflect adaptability, empathy, creativity, and resourcefulness. We see a great opportunity to bring together two world-class NUS schools – the Faculty of Engineering and the School of Design and Environment – to pioneer a unique model of interdisciplinary undergraduate education that takes advantage of the natural synergies between these fields.”
He added: “At NUS, we see a great opportunity to bring together two world-class NUS schools – the Faculty of Engineering and the School of Design and Environment – to pioneer a unique model of interdisciplinary undergraduate education that takes advantage of the natural synergies between these fields.”
The CDE will be a future-focused, interdisciplinary learning and research institution, designed to advance the exploration and application of the professions of engineering, architecture and design. It will be home to the 11 departments in the two existing schools, building on their unique strengths, talent, expertise and heritage.
The CDE was conceptualised by a task force chaired by Professor Ho, and comprising six industry leaders, Dean of the Faculty of Engineering, Dean of the School of Design and Environment, as well as eight academics from the two schools.
The new college has been designed to open new opportunities for students to take control of their education and prepare them for a multitude of career options in the future economy. It is part of a university-wide initiative by NUS to expand interdisciplinary learning and benefit more students.
Prof Thean said: “This is a very exciting development and we are encouraged by the positive response from students, employers and professional institutions following the introduction of the forward-looking common curriculum. At CDE, students will have the flexibility to build their own programme based on how broad, deep or integrated they want their education to be. This addresses the increasingly diverse design and engineering professions in Singapore. They will also gain a broad intellectual foundation for lifelong learning and development.”
He added: “Our goal is to nurture a new generation of professional engineers, technologists, architects, designers and built-environment specialists who will have deep domain knowledge, enhanced by a multi-disciplinary background. We hope our students will be well prepared to draw from and collaborate with wide areas of expertise, to solve complex problems.”
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