Top ITE student exposed to more than just engineering skills: 'They really opened my eyes'

This article was contributed by the Institute of Technical Education (ITE).

Tan Yuan Tian
Nitec in Mechanical Technology @ ITE College East
Recipient of Tay Eng Soon Gold Medal

Engineered for Solutions 

An engineer at heart and by training, Yuan Tian considers himself fortunate to have the opportunity to be involved in projects beyond his scope of studies. The exposure to the various competitions and projects made Yuan Tian step out of his comfort zone as he had to learn to interact with people from diverse backgrounds, such as meeting stroke patients to understand their needs and from there, solve problems and create solutions for them.  

These ‘extra-curricular activities’ also helped him hone his business skills. While participating in ITE Makerfest Challenge 2021, Yuan Tian had to learn and apply entrepreneurship skills such as budgeting, marketing, sales and more – areas which are unfamiliar for an engineering  student like him. These experiences made Yuan Tian’s ITE journey a fulfilling and enriching one as it gave him a better understanding of what he could achieve by applying the skills that he had learnt to solve real problems – something which he is very proud of. 

Skilled to Help 

“When I first joined ITE, I didn’t expect that I would be able to apply my engineering skills to solve real problems for others. I’m very glad to have the opportunities to be involved in various projects and competitions. They really opened my eyes and motivated me to aim higher in my studies and beyond. I would like to thank my class advisor, Mr Chua Zhong Yang, for his unwavering support and guidance which gave me confidence and helped me mature both academically and holistically.” 

After ITE 

Yuan Tian is currently pursuing a Diploma in Industrial & Product Design at Temasek Polytechnic. 

Top Achievements  

  • Yuan Tian received several accolades for displaying skills mastery in his projects, such as the Lee Kuan Yew Technology Award 2021, Tan Kah Kee Young Inventors’ Award 2021 and top prize in the ITE Makerfest Enterprise Challenge 2021. 

  • He was in the Director’s List for all terms from 2020 to 2021, and graduated top of his engineering cohort in 2021 with a perfect Grade Point Average of 4.0.  

  • Aside from his academic achievements, Yuan Tian finds time to engage in community work and has participated in the Very Special Arts Singapore programme where he designed and produced tote bags and cards for special needs students. 

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