Speech - Address by Ms Low Khah Gek, CEO of ITE, at ITE-NParks MOU Signing Ceremony on 8 May 2024, at ITE College East

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  • Publish date:08 May 2024

Ms Hwang Yu-Ning

CEO, National Parks Board


Dr Yap Him Hoo

Commissioner of Parks and Recreation and

Deputy CEO NParks


NParks & ITE Colleagues


Ladies & Gentlemen

  1. ITE signed our first MOU with NParks in 2019. This took place at the event where the Landscape Sector Transformation Plan was launched. We noted then that the landscape management industry was being revolutionalised and new technologies such as Drones, Tree Tilt Sensors, Tree Registry and Data Systems would be deployed. Work processes and jobs were re-designed. ITE’s partnership with NParks was timely as we could immediately tap on the expertise of NParks staff to refresh ITE’s training curriculum and equipment. The use of new technologies as well as data analytics and systems raised the profile and attractiveness of the landscape-related courses among our students.

  2. Let me provide some quantitative impact of our partnership in the last 5 years:
    • 567 ITE students and staff underwent the NParks Immersion Programme and gained first-hand experience with the latest digital and technology tools, conservation methods, and the operational considerations and goals of NParks.
    • 140 ITE students have completed and benefited from their 6-month internship in various divisions within NParks and gained practical experience and field insights when they were deployed at the Singapore Botanic Gardens or specific Neighbourhood Parks or joined the teams managing Streetscapes and Conservation.
    • 183 ITE students participated in the Student-Run Park initiative at Bedok Town Park and have applied their newly acquired knowledge and skills in a real park setting to ensure quality maintenance of the plants and trees and provide additional features such as a therapeutic garden and nature-inspired playground to enhance the attractiveness and experience of the park for the public.
    • 467 Peter Lim Scholarships were awarded to students pursuing Landscape courses. These scholarships serve to motivate the students as well as provide them financial support, enabling them to focus on their training and education.
    • Three ITE training programmes have been refreshed and re-designed with valuable inputs from NParks - Nitec in Urban Greenery & Landscape, Higher Nitec in Landscape Management & Design and Work-Study Diploma in Arboriculture & Horticulture.
  3. Today, we are signing a new 5-year MOU. We look forward to strengthening our collaboration and partnership to enthuse our students, enhance their competencies and enable them to build their careers in the landscape industry. In particular, we will introduce new elements and participate in new initiatives:
    • Include wildlife management content to provide students with understanding and expertise in preserving and managing local fauna ecosystems. Singaporeans are fascinated and proud that some wildlife live in and thrive in our parks, rivers and nature reserves. There is a BBC Earth documentary ‘The New Wild’ which premiered on 7 April and one episode features Singapore’s otters and noted their intelligence to learn, remember, problem-solve, parent and cooperate as they live in our city and urban environment.
    • Be involved in new projects such as the landscaping of Jurong Lake Gardens to create more green, natural and biophilic spaces, thereby enhancing the beauty and ecological health of our city.
    • Support NParks to showcase innovation and emphasise sustainability in the biennial Singapore Garden Festival.

  4. I thank NParks for your support and partnership. Thank you for valuing ITE students and joining us in nurturing, inspiring and optimising their potential. Together, we shall build a pipeline of talents for the landscape industry and fire their passion to ensure   Singapore is a beautiful and cool home not just for Singaporeans but for the various fauna and floral species who have also found their home in Singapore.

Thank you.