The Republic of Singapore is helping celebrate its first half century with a present that will enhance its second: an endowed professorship in the social sciences at the National University of Singapore.
Last week Singapore’s minister for Muslim affairs, Yaacob Ibrahim, presented at check for S$3.8 million to NUS to fund the Yusof Ishak Professorship in Social Sciences, pushing the total raised to north of S$7.6 million ($5.4 million in U.S. dollars at current exchange rates). Organizers originally had hoped to reach S$6 million.
The professorship is named for the first president of the Republic of Singapore, Encik Yusof bin Ishak, who served from the moment of Singapore’s independence from the Federation of Malaysia in 1965 until his death in 1970. Evan while serving as president, he had been the third chancellor of the University of Singapore, a predecessor institution to NUS.
As NUS announced when the campaign to endow the seat was announced last year, “The Yusof Ishak Professor is expected to assume stewardship for enhancing cutting edge research in one or more of the following fields of study: race, ethnicity and community studies and multi-culturalism; communication and civic engagement; and studies of religion and religious diversity.”
NUS is currently recruiting a senior scholar for the position.