Established by the NTU English Division in 2008 to celebrate the graduation of the first cohort of Honours students in English Literature in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, the Koh Tai Ann Gold Medal does not simply look at academic results. The award’s selection committee also looks at qualities such as leadership and creativity in cultural activities and seeks out those who can potentially contribute to the Gold Medal’s over-arching objective of developing a Singaporean “core” in the teaching of English Literature. Please see issue 3 of Continuum for further details (pp. 38–41): Click here or magazine thumbnail to read
Some previous recipients:
Cheryl Julia Lee is an Assistant Professor with the English department at NTU. She graduated with a BA (Hons.) in English Literature with a minor in Creative Writing from NTU in 2014. She received her MPhil in Irish Writing from Trinity College Dublin in 2015, and her PhD from Durham University, UK in 2019. She was a recipient of the HASS International PhD Scholarship. Cheryl Julia’s poetry collection, We Were Always Eating Expired Things, was published in 2014, and was nominated for the Singapore Literature Prize. Her other creative work can be found in QLRS, Icarus, and Prick of the Spindle, among others. She is also currently the critical editor of prose.sg.
After completing her BA in English at NTU in 2016, Tan Yan Lin Hazel was awarded MOE’s Pre-service Masters Sponsorship, and went on to pursue a MA by Research in English Studies at Durham University, UK. Under the supervision of Professor Patricia Waugh, her thesis – “Reconfiguring the Real: Art & Aesthetic Innovation in Kazuo Ishiguro’s Axiomatic Fictions” – was awarded an unconditional pass in 2018. Upon completing the MA, Hazel enrolled in the National Institute of Education, NTU, for the Postgraduate Diploma in Education to obtain formal certification to teach. Currently, she teaches English Literature and the English Language to secondary school students in Singapore.
Ynez Lim is an educator with the Ministry of Education. When she is off duty, she pictures herself chilling with a good book and a cup of (bubble) tea on her bed. She graduated from NTU English in 2019 and was the Koh Tai Ann Gold Medallist of AY18/19. Upon graduating from NTU English, she went on to pursue her Post-Graduate Diploma in Education in the National Institute of Education and has returned to the education system as an aspiring literature and English educator. She is currently picking up the art of Improvisational Theatre as an interest, and is actively exploring ways in which improv elements can be infused to enhance the learning and teaching of literature. She writes that ‘NTU English had been a nurturing space for me to develop and challenge myself holistically; it is with gratitude that I carry these experiences with me. To both prospective and current students, allow me to dedicate an invigorating verse from Walt Whitman’s ‘O Me! O Life!’: “That here you are - that life exists and identity / That the powerful play goes on, and you may contribute a verse.” I genuinely hope that a degree in the Humanities will give you the passion for life as much as it has given me, and may you turn that passion into something larger than yourselves.’