The multi-disciplinary course will train students to apply drama and psychology to address social issues like ageing and drug abuse.
Close to 100 people congregated at the Chinatown Heritage Centre today to solve a 1930s "murder" mystery. To commemorate the launch of Asia's first Diploma in Applied Drama and Psychology (DADP) offered by Singapore Polytechnic, guests, staff and students were treated to a museum theatre performance to gain first-hand experience in applying drama and psychology to address social issues like ageing and drug abuse.
DADP is the first multi-disciplinary course offered by a polytechnic in Singapore that integrates both the Arts and Social Sciences. It is unique as it trains students to integrate the skills in applied drama and psychology. Graduates will gain from the combined theory and practice of psychology and applied drama.
The introduction of DADP is timely as it coincides with the growing demand for skilled professionals in the arts, arts education, community development and social service sectors.
Speaking at the launch of the diploma, Mr Tan Hang Cheong, who will take over as SP Principal in January 2008 said: "This year alone, the Singapore government will endorse 650 quality arts education programmes for 330,000 students in Singapore, and will inject an additional $300,000 for the rehabilitation of young offenders under the successful Guidance Programme. These are all potential areas for employment of our DADP graduates."
DADP graduates who love drama and with a desire to serve the community can look forward to gainful employment, such as programme administrators officers, youth officer, library officer, education and rehabilitation facilitators, social work assistants, prevention and intervention programme officers, outreach officers and drama educators.
In the months leading up to the diploma launch, SP has worked with various community-based agencies to expose DADP students to real-life experience through training attachments and internship programmes. In September, the team worked with 15 youths-at-risk from the Student Advisory Centre under the Recharge programme.
The launch of DADP saw SP students working side by side with active seniors from the Council for Third Age (C3A). They put up a museum theatre performance to solve a murder mystery through applied drama and psychology.
Commenting on the collaboration with SP, Mr Gerard Ee, Chairman of C3A and Guest-of-Honour of the launch said: "Active ageing is still a very new concept in Singapore. Though it is fast gaining popularity and acceptance, many people have never heard about active ageing, or have only hazy ideas about it. We see much potential in applied drama as a method of delivering the active ageing message, and our endorsement of SP's DADP will give us the avenue to embark on joint theatre projects. The Council is happy to be part of the DADP, and we look forward to other opportunities for collaborating with SP."
The Diploma in Applied Drama and Psychology is a three-year course with an initial intake of 40 students in the academic year of 2008. Interested "O" level school leavers can find out more about the course at SP's Open House from 10 to 12 January 2008 or on our website.