SMU student: Ms Melody Chau Tsz Kwun, Lee Kong Chian School of Business, second- year student Q: Where are you from and what are you studying? A: I am currently a business student at SMU majoring in marketing, and I will start my third year this coming semester. My parents are from Hong Kong, which explains why I am a Hong Kong citizen. But I was actually born in Singapore and have been living here ever since. Most of my relatives are back in Hong Kong and I usually visit them once a year with my parents. Q: Why did you choose SMU? A: I chose SMU because it is indeed “a different U”. And I wanted a different kind of university experience which I believe SMU is providing. I like the lessons conducted in lecture style and the many opportunities the school offers through co-curricular activities (CCAs), community service projects (CSPs), and student exchange programmes. Personally, I think SMU can prepare me better for the realities of the corporate world with its independent style of learning, compulsory internships, and a dedicated careers office. Q: What is the most enjoyable experience so far? A: It has to be my trip to Vietnam this summer with my overseas community service project (OCSP) group. I was co-leader of the project and the whole experience was just awesome. Q: What is most difficult about life in Singapore and how do you cope with it? A: It may come across as a very competitive environment, but I believe this helps you grow and pushes you to perform your very best. I get great satisfaction from all the hard work and effort I put in when I achieve my goal or do better than expected. Also, I usually study with a group of friends, because of the encouragement I get from them and the peer influence. When I see them studying hard I will do the same. I think there must always be a balance in life so, as and when necessary, I take a break from school–related work and just have fun, spending time with friends and family. Q: What is your favourite subject and why? A: It is consumer behaviour, a marketing module. The course is really interesting because we assess how different marketing strategies affect consumer behaviour and purchasing. One of the projects we did was a real-life experiment observing people’s behaviour as they bought. I had a very good professor who was really encouraging and understands students well. Q: What hobbies do you have in Singapore? A: The main one is shopping. I think that is every girl's hobby. Other than that, I like to hang out in cafes with my friends. Sometimes, I head down to the beach at Sentosa and have a sun-tanning session. There are so many types of yummy food in Singapore that it is hard to define a favourite, but if I had to choose one, it would be laksa. Q: Can you suggest a few must-do things for anyone who wants to study in Singapore? A: First, get used to Singlish. Second, be prepared for the unpredictable weather and try hawker food – char kway teow, Sambal stingray and so on. Third, visit Sentosa, where you will find Universal Studios, adventure cove and the beach. And the final thing I suggest is to party and enjoy the nightlife.