Clementeen of the Year

Steffi Tan Si Rui (2019-4C1)

Student Council

St John Brigade

The Clementeen of the Year award recognises the student who has demonstrated excellence in all areas: exemplary character, strong leadership in his/her involvement in school activities, and excellent academic results at the national exams.

Steffi Tan was the President of the Student Council from 2018 to 2019, and she was known for her ability to make others feel at ease with her positive and cheerful disposition. This, coupled with her heart and will to lead and serve others, has meant that she was able to reach out to many people, teachers and peers alike, and leave an impact in their lives.

As President of the Student Council (2018-2019), Steffi led the Student Council in organising school events such as the ASPIRE Camps, Teachers’ Day Celebration, Graduation Night and Facilitator Camps. Her enthusiasm in being a positive influence to others earned her the respect of many of her peers. She was also known for her energy in motivating others to work toward a common objective.

Beyond her contributions to the school through Student Council activities, Steffi was also an active cadet in the St. John Brigade (SJB), rising to the rank of Staff Sergeant. She led other cadets to represent the school in foot drill competitions in 2017 and 2018. In 2019, Steffi was given the Excellence in Service and Leadership Award (Star) for her outstanding leadership qualities and contributions to the Student Council and the SJB.

An exemplary and self-disciplined student who was able to manage her studies despite having to juggle various commitments, Steffi was passionate in her pursuit of knowledge. Possessing a flair for writing and speaking, she contributed actively in class, sharing insights and creative solutions. Beyond the classroom, she was always ready to assist her friends, whatever the task might be. In the days leading to the ‘O’ Level examinations, she spurred her friends on to achieve their best by revising with them and guiding them in the topics that they were unsure in.

Steffi is currently studying in National Junior College (NJC) and is part of the Student Council Executive Committee. She is also pursuing her interests in singing as a member of the NJC Choir.

In Conversation
with Steffi

1. What is one of your fondest memories in CTSS?

One of my fondest memories in CTSS would be our Secondary 2 Camp in 2017 because it was the time where I managed to conquer my fear of heights. My whole group was cheering me on even though I was trembling so badly that I fell off (but that is a memory we all hold dear)! I also made many good friends from the different streams during that camp. They were the ones who helped me get over my fears and I am really glad to have met them. That camp really showed me how I should put myself out there to be brave and experience new things because if you never try, you’ll never know.

2. Who are you thankful for in your time in CTSS? Why?

I am deeply grateful for a lot of people such as all the teachers who have taught me and my friends who have been through thick and thin with me.

However, if I had to choose someone specifically, it would be Mdm Wan because she was the one who showered me with care and concern throughout my Secondary 4 journey. She was the one who was still checking on me during the Math paper of my Preliminary Exams because I had a high fever from the previous day. She also spent a lot of time out of class conducting consultations and remedial sessions to help me improve in my Humanities so I am really grateful for her. She is extremely dedicated and I am so glad to have met such an inspiring teacher in my CT life! Thank you, Mdm Wan!

Performing Arts Medallion

Jin Lingzi, Theresa (2019-4A1)

Drama Club

The Performing Arts Medallion is awarded to the student who has demonstrated a deep passion for the performing arts, and has performed his/her craft at a high level.

Theresa has been awarded the Performing Arts Medallion for her involvement in drama. Her commitment and dedication to the Drama Club has seen her rising to lead as the Vice-President.

Theresa played her assigned roles well, doing extensive research through observing others and working on her own portrayal. During the Singapore Youth Festival Arts Presentation in 2019, she was involved in two productions, including one in which she played the lead role as an old woman who had suffered a stroke. Her convincing performance won excellent feedback from the judges.

Theresa was also appointed as the Stage Manager of the school's biennial musical production in 2018. In order to better understand the actors' needs, Theresa also joined in chorus roles for the musical. Even when the Assistant Stage Manager was unable to be present for the performance, she was able to take up the additional tasks to ensure a smooth production.

Theresa has also been consistently generous in guiding her juniors. At the end of 2019, she returned to the club as an alumnus after completing her national exams, to guide the student directors in putting up CTSS Drama Club’s first ever self-directed play, FOUR.

In her own time, she has pursued her interest by watching many productions, to understand theatre production from the audience's point of view. She is also training with local theatre companies to be a stage manager.

The Performing Arts Medallion is thus a recognition of her dedication to her art, which has encompassed crew work (backstage), writing, directing and cast work.

Beyond drama, Theresa also displays proficiency in the Chinese language. As part of the Author-in-Residence Programme, she was mentored by a local writer, Mr Quek Yong Siu, to produce an original piece of writing. She also won awards in creative writing and storytelling competitions.

Theresa is currently studying in Catholic Junior College, where she is loving the study of Drama texts in H2 Literature Drama texts very much.

In Conversation
with Theresa

1. What is one of your fondest memories in CTSS?

My fondest memory in CTSS is the period of time leading up to the ‘O’ level examinations. By the second half of Sec 4 year, I felt as if I’ve been through enough in CT to feel truly like home there. It was as if I knew CTSS like the back of my hand – not just the school compound, but the people in school; their iconic gestures and habits, their likes and dislikes, and even some of their pet peeves!

I had all my favourite people (from CTSS of course) to journey alongside me and work together towards a common goal. I loved every night study session – sitting cross-legged on two canteen benches at once, battling some of the most confusing Math problems together with my friends while devouring all the yummy snacks sponsored by the very kind PSG.

I loved planting myself on my favourite study corner bench all day long, (and “forcing” my friends to join me there all the time). That bench bore me through all my amazing Chemistry, History and Literature consultations. I loved the nights before my Literature papers, when my entire Lit class would be on the same Google Doc, doing our revision together. I loved being one of the earliest to arrive or latest to leave school, capturing some of the most beautiful pictures of the place I call home.

2. Which was your most memorable performance experience and why?

On 7 January 2019, CTDRAMA put up a play as part of our CCA showcase to the Secondary One students. Due to some miscommunications, Drama Club only received notice to prepare for the CCA showcase five days before the actual date, hence we had a tough race against time.

The play, titled ‘Replay’, was mainly written by Hannah Chua (4B1’20) over the course of just three days and it was completed less than a week before the show. We weaved in excerpts from two or three of our club’s iconic plays, as well as an introduction to our Drama Club’s humble beginnings ten years ago. I remember how we had to scrap our first draft (as we’re both perfectionists) and pull all-nighters to rush out the second draft 36 hours before the showcase.
Furthermore, we did not have a finalised cast or crew at that point. However, the most heart-warming thing was that almost half the club came for our last-minute rehearsal on a Sunday. We didn’t have any props or costumes. The scripts had been churned out from my cranky printer and our rehearsal venue was an open space near Clementi Sports Complex.

But we had each other. 

No show is memorable without an incredibly beautiful story and some incredibly beautiful hearts behind it. Theatre is about the people so my most memorable performance experience is nothing large-scale.  Ironically, in terms of quality, it was far from the best I had ever performed.

Yet, it has a most special place in my heart.

Replay is dedicated to a very special teacher who is the reason why CTDRAMA ever happened, and why I’ve the honour of writing this as the Performing Arts Medallion of 2019. 

UG Cadet of the Year

Jack Chua Yi Chen (2019-4D1)

National Police Cadet Corps(NPCC)

The UG Cadet of the Year is awarded to the cadet who has demonstrated the confidence to lead, the passion to learn and the humility to serve in the uniformed group, and has played a pivotal role in the unit’s outstanding attainment for the year.

Jack was a dedicated and passionate member of the National Police Cadet Corps (NPCC) throughout his four years in CTSS. He enthusiastically volunteered his participation for many activities, such as parades and competitions for drill, shooting and campcraft.

Jack was appointed as the Chairperson of NPCC (2018-2019). He led his cadets through well-planned activities and events, ensuring that they enjoyed and benefitted from the training. Jack also contributed to the Corp's achievement of the Overall Unit Proficiency Award (Gold) in 2018. He was later awarded the Station Inspector Rank, the highest rank a cadet can hold in the four years of CCA, and was the Parade 2IC during Speech Day. In recognition of his outstanding contributions in NPCC, he was also awarded the Singapore Police Force-NPCC Badge in 2019. This is a pinnacle badge awarded by the NPCC Headquarters to exemplary student leaders.

In addition to his commitments in NPCC, Jack was also a passionate and dedicated member of the Student Council. As Vice-President of the Student Council (2018-2019), Jack also led various projects such as the Teachers’ Day Celebrations, Graduation Night, and the Secondary One ASPIRE Camp. He was able to juggle his responsibilities well, gaining the trust of all who worked with him. In 2019, Jack was given the Excellence in Service and Leadership Award (Star) for his leadership and contributions.

A responsible and highly motivated student, Jack also has a particular flair for History, Biology, Chemistry and Computing. Beyond school, he participated in the National Olympiad in Informatics in 2019, and was awarded a Honourable Mention.

Even after graduation, Jack still finds time to return during his free time to guide his juniors, and spend time with them through various games and activities. He is currently studying in Eunoia Junior College and is the chairperson of his class.

In Conversation
with Jack

1. How would you advise your juniors to aspire and grow?

Find friends who motivate you and pick you up, the ones who give you energy and most importantly, learn to give it back to them. Treasure these friends as they’ll have your back through thick and thin. Treasure them by reciprocating. Together, you will all grow into better people.

Also, discover the passions within you and pursue them. Doing a subject you love gives you a lot more motivation. Challenges become excitement and work becomes play. Pursue your passion, and you’ll surely do your best.

2. What do you consider your defining moment as a UG Cadet?

My defining moment as a UG cadet was participating in the 2018 National Police Annual parade (NPAP) in the post-parade Precision Drill Squad (PDS) Segment. The training timings scheduled for the PDS segments were evidently a lot more than that for the main parade segments. There were training from 9am-6pm on some Saturdays and during the March holidays. Even during school days, I had to be released early to attend training sessions at HQ till 6pm.

One training session I remember vividly was on Day 2 of an in-school NPCC camp where the NPAP participants from our school had to break camp earlier to attend. This training was the toughest. I was already exhausted from all the camp activities. It was not easy to have gone through that training with barely any rest. After all that training, one may think the happy end to it was to put up a great performance. However, on that fateful performance day, heavy rain struck. My team was unable to perform as a result.

At first, this broke my heart. Why did I even attend so many training sessions just to stand aside and watch the wet-weather programme on the actual day? I honestly felt like I had wasted so much of my time for nothing. But in hindsight, the whole incident taught me perseverance to endure the training and self-discipline to work tirelessly at perfecting the PDS routine, especially out of scheduled training sessions. Above all, I learnt to never see the journey as a waste just because the destination fails to live up to expectations.

Sportsperson of the Year

Tan Wei Xuan (2019-4D1)

Volleyball (2017-2019)

The Sportsperson of the Year is awarded to the student who has achieved an outstanding performance at national or international competition, and has consistently displayed exemplary conduct and sportsmanship on and off the field of play.

Wei Xuan joined CTSS Volleyball in Secondary 1, without any prior background in the sport. His athletic build and talent in sports, coupled with hard work during training, meant that he was able to pick up the sport very effectively, playing a key role in the team and representing the school in competitions after training for only three months.

Wei Xuan was appointed Captain of the Volleyball CCA in Secondary 2, in view of his outstanding leadership capabilities and flair for the sport. He embraced the challenge even though this meant that he had to lead teammates who were more senior than he was. As Captain, he worked closely with the teachers and coaches to improve the team’s health and well-being, taking the initiative to suggest improvements and planning ahead to ensure that trainings were smoothly conducted.

He represented the school in many zonal and national competitions in the course of his four years in school. Notably, he led the school team to achieve a Fourth place in the 2019 National School Games West Zone 'B' Division Volleyball Championship, which was significant for the team given the strong competition they were facing. The achievements of the team reflect Wei Xuan's effectiveness in rallying his team mates to achieve a shared vision.

As a sportsperson, what makes Wei Xuan remarkable is his ability to manage his emotions. He has never once been seen displaying negative emotional distress on the court, even when under stress. Because of his immensely likeable personality and ability to lead on and off the court, he was able to garner respect from his team. He was humble even though he knew he was one of the better players in the team. Out of the volleyball court, Wei Xuan is also known to be a student with a quick wit, and a dogged determination to do well in his studies. He has been able to balance his academic studies and co-curricular activities well.

Wei Xuan is currently studying in Hwa Chong Institution and is part of their volleyball team.

In Conversation
with Wei Xuan

1. How would you advise your juniors to aspire and grow?

Learn to be strong in the face of adversity, and learn how to adapt to different situations. Your journey in your CCA, studies and school life definitely won’t be smooth sailing. You will face or cause unexpected problems which may affect you emotionally or physically. Stay calm, and learn how to deal with the situation in a focused way and ask for help if you need it. Learn from your setbacks and mistakes so that you won’t repeat them in the future. Use the mistakes you made as an inspiration or driving force to strive to do better next time.

Always strive to be the best at whatever you do, whether it be your CCA or studies. Take pride in your craft and work, as it defines the work and effort you have put into it.

2. Which quality has helped you to become the sportsperson that you are?

The ability to work under pressure. Having to work under a caring yet demanding teacher in charge and a fierce coach for 4 years really requires me to be able to stay calm and continue striving even if I’m under pressure or under-performing. Most people would crack after putting up with all the pressure, but I managed to work well with it.

Somehow, my team and I always find ourselves in unwanted do-or-die situations, where we needed to win otherwise we would be out. In those games, I managed to keep my team focused on the game itself and performed to the very best of our abilities. And we did succeed sometimes, even when the odds were stacked against us.

Community Service Award

Ee Hui Xin (2019-4D1)

The Community Service Award is presented to the student who has contributed significantly to the community, and has led others in leaving a positive impact.

Hui Xin is a sociable and friendly student who interacts well with people from different socio-cultural backgrounds. She is also a helpful and supportive friend to many and always looks beyond herself by considering the needs of others. An outspoken and eloquent student, she champions issues she feels strongly about.

Beyond contributing to the school as a student leader in Guzheng and the Student Council, Hui Xin also contributed meaningfully to the broader community. Together with her classmates, Hui Xin visited the St. Luke's Eldercare in 2018 and the Jamiyah Student Care Centre in 2019, organising activities to brighten the day for the elderly and children at these two places.

With her Guzheng CCA mates, she also served at the Bethany Methodist Nursing Home, where the Guzheng Ensemble performed for the residents in the Home, spreading their love for music while bringing joy and warmth.

As the Head of Community Outreach Department of the Student Council, Hui Xin co-headed the team in organising a project which reached out to the entire school population to give back to the community. Passionate about making a difference in the lives of the children from low-income families, Hui Xin and her team worked closely with Epsworth Community Services. After collecting information of the wishes of the children at the centre, the team organised a donation drive during recess and lunch breaks to encourage the school population to “adopt” and help fulfil these wishes. Her passion for community service and dedication towards the cause led to the success of the project, which left a lasting impact in the hearts of the children.

Through the various projects and activities, Hui Xin has grown to become an empathetic young adult who better understands the needs and concerns of the community.

In Conversation
with Hui Xin

1. Who are you thankful for in your time in CTSS? Why?

I am definitely thankful for everyone who has gone through all my ups and downs with me. I would like to thank my teachers – Ms Lin, Ms Sheetal, Ms Yang and many others – and also my friends, who have always been standing by my side, giving me support in many different ways, motivating me to press on.

I especially want to express my gratitude to Ms Yang. She was my classparent, subject teacher, student council teacher in charge of community outreach and also my life guide. She was the one who always believed in me, and had faith in me. She was always extremely patient when coaching me. During the event management, she always had confidence in me, trusting that my ideas were feasible no matter how difficult they could be to implement. With her guidance and support, I can confidently say that everything seemed possible and failing was not something shameful as I could always learn from it.

2. What is the most fulfilling thing about serving the community?

The most fulfilling thing about serving the community I think would be the smiles on the faces of our beneficiaries when we reach out to help them. The beneficiaries I have interacted with are mostly from low-income families or other challenged circumstances.

While our little help to repaint their houses or to put up programmes may not be something that would totally transform their lives, it would definitely bring them joy for that particular moment.

These little contributions also impact the lives of the giver and the beneficiary. We feel a small but meaningful sense of accomplishment when we have the privilege to brighten up the lives of others.