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The future is young

A newcomer to Cambodia, the Singapore (Cambodia) International Academy has already made a lasting impact on the Kingdom’s educational landscape by putting the youth at centre stage.

Singapore Cambodia International Academy
October 10, 2019
The future is young
Mr Anselm Chu with SCIA High School students

Just as both Singapore and Cambodia are young nations, SCIA too is in its early years. 

The fresh and ambitious characteristics of a young nation have also fueled SCIA in its first year of success in Cambodia. When the Singapore Institute of Management (SIM) Group, which counts SCIA among its members, first arrived in Cambodia, they were committed to importing the world’s finest educational systems from Singapore and Cambridge.

Singapore students are consistently ranked top in an Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) global survey on collaborative problem-solving abilities, a core skill for innovative high achievers. 

It is this core skill that SCIA is dedicated to nurture in all its students. SCIA has been appointed by Singapore Examinations and Assessment Board (SEAB) as an Overseas Examination Centre which allows overseas schools to benchmark their academic standards against Singapore’s. Grade 6 students at SCIA may sit for the International Primary School Examination (iPSLE).

Like Singapore, Cambodia is a nation whose future is defined by its youth – nearly two thirds of the Kingdom’s population are younger than 30. To continue Cambodia’s thriving development, this next generation of young people must be equipped with the skills needed to play leading roles in the advancement of the Kingdom. 

Mr Anselm Chu, SCIA Managing Director and School Director, explained that the young generation is essential to Cambodia’s future.

“Education plays an extremely vital role in developing Singapore from a third world country to a member of the first world, ” he said. “Similar to Cambodia now, Singapore’s only natural resource was its people – and the youth is the Kingdom’s greatest asset.”

An SCIA primary school student conducting an experiment at the school’s science laboratory

This ethos is at the heart of SCIA, which focuses on STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) subjects, instilling in students higher order thinking skills, a conscious outlook that emphasises responsibility to care for their community as well as an entrepreneurial spirit to produce well-rounded leaders of the future. 

Two SCIA students were nominated by the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport (MoEYS) to represent Cambodia at one of the largest and most prestigious competitions for young scientists around the world; the recent 34th China Adolescents Science and Technology Innovation Contest (CASTIC) held in Macau in July 2019. 

The students were thrilled to win third place in the International Projects Category with their science project, which attempts to reduce the use of natural resources through a technique of sustainable aquatic farming that simultaneously increases productivity.

The Cambodia team represented by SCIA and Preah Sisowath High School with their RASA project

Such achievements set an important precedent for students to consider the options available to them as global citizens. To aid these international ambitions, SCIA has built upon the success of Singapore’s bilingual system by providing a trilingual approach: English, Chinese and Khmer. This gives students the chance to connect with both East and West, while still embracing local Khmer culture. As China continues to play a key role in the international economics with the One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative, the Chinese language will be increasingly used in business communications.

Both SIM and SCIA are underpinned by the understanding that an international perspective is crucial to prepare for an ever changing and interconnecting world.

“Today’s jobs may not exist in the future, ” said Mr Chu. “With SCIA’s signature programmes, students will be nurtured with not only STEM, Entrepreneurship and Leadership skills but also innovation, collaboration and problem solving.” 

The potential of the youth should be recognised, and it is for this reason that SCIA has launched Corporate Social Responsibility programmes and scholarships to engage economically disadvantaged students with the potential to excel. 

SCIA invited industry speakers to share tips with youths on raising their employability at the recent pre-university open house

With only one year under its belt, SCIA has its eyes fixed firmly on the future. SCIA introduces the Management Foundation Programme (MFP) in October, a six-month pre-university programme recognised by SIM Group for entry into SIM diploma in Singapore and SIM’s reputable partner universities from the United Kingdom, United States and Australia. In February, SCIA was officially appointed a Cambridge International School, placing it in the company of the finest education institutions in the world. Soon, it will embark on offering its students opportunities for higher and continuing education.

Setting the benchmark for its students, SCIA strives for continuous development, pushing the boundaries of what the academy can achieve. Here’s to a first year of success; the best is yet to be. 

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