Lasalle-Goldsmiths tie-up another boost for the arts

The arts scene in Singapore is set to receive another boost, as Lasalle College of the Arts yesterday announced a tie-up with the prestigious Goldsmiths College of the University of London.

The partnership will offer 14 public-funded arts degree courses with subsidised tuition fees.

This means that Singaporeans can now pursue a top-notch overseas degree in areas such as fine arts, design communication, film and animation art - without leaving home.

Undergraduates pursuing the three-year degree programmes will receive Bachelor of Arts with honours certificates bearing the widely recognised Goldsmiths name upon graduation.

The Lasalle-Goldsmiths partnership is for an initial five-year period.

Prospective students who are Singaporeans or permanent residents (PRs) stand to benefit from a Ministry of Education subsidy on their tuition fees.

Singaporean students will pay $10,000 in tuition fees annually, instead of the full $18,000. PRs will pay subsidised fees of $13,200 annually, down from $19,000.

Some 200 students are expected to benefit from the funding, which will be made available at the start of August, when the degree programmes are launched.

At the partnership inking ceremony yesterday at Lasalle's campus near Princep Street, the guest of honour, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, noted that the arts are an important aspect of Singapore society, helping to bond people despite their differences.

He added that the Government will continue to support the arts scene, by providing good infrastructure and through funding.

Over the next five years, the Government's annual spending on the arts programme will be increased by more than 50 per cent to $365 million per year, as announced last year, said Mr Lee.

"We want to give talented and passionate Singaporeans every opportunity to realise their potential," he said, pointing to the subsidised fees of the Lasalle-Goldsmiths programme as yet another example of the Government's commitment.

Mr Peter Seah, chairman of Lasalle, said that the partnership has been in the works for the past two years.

"This partnership...will continue to energise our learning environment through academic exchanges on approaches in teaching as well as research," he said.

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