Wheelock College-Singapore Graduates 59 Students

June 11, 2009

Fifty-nine students graduated from Wheelock's B.S. program in Early Childhood Educational Studies and Leadership June 3 in Singapore. The commencement ceremony took place at the Ngee Ann Convention Center. President Jackie Jenkins-Scott presented the commencement address.

The Wheelock Center for International Education, Leadership, and Innovation has developed and managed diploma and degree programs in Singapore in partnership with RTRC Asia for many years. This new baccalaureate program resulted from the solicitation by the Singapore Ministry of Education to foreign institutions and Singapore's polytechnics to join together to develop special degree programs in niche areas.

Students in this program study full-time for two years in Wheelock's B.S. program in Early Childhood Educational Studies and Leadership. Wheelock has collaborated with Ngee Ann Polytechnic and RTRC Asia in developing and launching the program. Faculty from both Boston and Singapore are the instructors, and in most cases they team-teach the 20 courses required for the degree.

Students learn in cohort groups  and must spend five weeks (at the start of their second year) in residence on the Wheelock campus in Boston. There they take two courses, visit innovative day care centers, schools, and other related facilities in the Greater Boston area, and interact with a variety of professionals and experts in the field. Courses in Singapore are taught at Ngee Ann Polytechnic.

"It's an exciting start for Wheelock College, its two partners and, of course, for the students," said David Fedo, Executive Director of the Wheelock College Center for International Education, Leadership, and Innovation, who has been with the program since its beginning in June of 2007. "The Singapore students, all of who have diplomas in Early Childhood Education from Ngee Ann Polytechnic, have been serious about and committed to their studies. But I think they're having some fun too, and they're learning from their peers as well as from the instructors.

"Above everything else, these graduates—all of whom are women—are passionate about nurturing and mentoring children, and in turn supporting the families of children and the communities in which they live. We at Wheelock-Singapore are confident that they will make a measurable difference, in Singapore or wherever they choose to live and work, as superb teachers and leaders in the profession of early childhood education."

Fedo reported that, by the middle of April, 63 percent of the upcoming graduates had already received firm job commitments.

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