FES News and Updates (Impetus Aug 2020)

VCF Freshmen Orientation Programme

In this issue of Impetus, I wish to draw your attention to two instances of one of FES’ most cherished distinctive of student initiative. In the first instance, the NUS Varsity Christian Fellowship (VCF) had their Freshmen Orientation Programme (FOP) from 14-17 July. 126 freshmen had already signed up for the programme. The planning committee had to quickly and radically adapt a camp which typically relies heavily on physical presence to the digital space. Google Maps Street View was used to let students be able to “see” the campus even though they were not physically walking around in it, an assortment of digital tools like Miro and Mentimeter were used to aid in workshop facilitation, and a whole world was built in Minecraft so that the Game of Life could be kept as a VCF FOC tradition. More insight into the VCF FOP experience can be found on the FES Instagram @fesfellowship. Meanwhile, here is Verlyn, a freshmen from the faculty of Engineering, to share briefly on what stood out for her overall FOP experience:

“Something that stood out for me was definitely the similarity towards church camps! I really enjoyed church camps and I’m glad to be able to meet new brothers and sisters in Christ through FOP. I honestly felt the love of Christ through all of these people, and just how caring we all are to one another! While it is a bit of a pity that we cannot have FOP in person, VCF FOP was really a very enjoyable experience, the OGLs and freshmen in my group were all so open about sharing our experiences! It has been a blessing to know every single person in OG 10 Tamar! I also learnt more about what VCF stands for, which is fellowship and being the salt and light to NUS!”

East Asia Regional Conference 2020

The second instance of student initiative was the organisation of the online East Asia Regional Conference 2020 (EARC) on 17 and 18 July. In a momentous attempt to rescue what was otherwise another cancelled conference due to Covid-19, a number of students from the region banded together to plan and pray for an opportunity to gather amidst the ongoing pandemic. Here is Natalie Liew from the Singapore Polytechnic English Christian Fellowship (SPECF), and part of the organising committee for EARC, to reflect on her experience:

“EARC was supposed to be held in Thailand in July. However, with the situation surrounding Covid-19, it was cancelled. While this was all going on, in Singapore, the National Student Council (NSC) Exco had a meeting and talked about how we were interested in finding ways to foster friendships with other movements and support each other during this difficult time. Lisman and Annette, the East Asia Regional Secretary, suggested that we could use EARC as a platform and opportunity to do so. We then formed a team of students from different movements who were as enthusiastic as us to plan for this event. We understood that time was an issue and we wanted to include as many as possible who want to participate, hence we decided to run it in a webinar/workshop format to allow everyone to join regardless of their schedules. I personally felt honoured to be able to help helm the event, and I learnt lots from the experience. It was exciting yet nerve-wracking to know that I would be speaking to hundreds of people. I thank God for allowing me to have many new friendships blossoming out of this experience, and for the opportunity to learn more about other movements and cultures better.”

Please Pray with Us

The month of August has been marked with more planning and trainings than usual as schools began reopening, both in the sense of beginning new academic years, but also allowing students back on the campus. However, while different schools have enacted different policies regarding social distancing and online learning for their students, outsiders, which include our staff workers, are still generally not allowed on campus or are severely restricted. Despite these difficulties, online freshmen orientation camps and welcome teas have still been happening with a generally increased attendance due to the convenience of digital access. Please pray for an effective witness to all who have attended our teas and camps thus far, that we might make the best use of any opportunity given to us. Pray also for a collaborative and co-operative working spirit among the students and staff workers as we all continue to navigate the outworking of the ministries in the changing context of the campus today.


Jeremiah Goh
Communications Team Lead