Jotham Wong Shin Yen
jotham2bDiploma in Biomedical Science (DBS)

Lee Kuan Yew Award
Alfred Robert Edis Prize

The aspiring cardiologist with a heart

Jotham’s interest in cardiology was partially influenced by his workaholic parents, as they enjoy their work and cannot stand being idle. Drawing a similarity to them, he finds that the work in cardiology is constantly moving and there is never a dull moment. An unfortunate incident, in which his grandmother suffered a heart attack, made him realise the fragility of life. This paved his decision to enrol into Singapore Polytechnic’s (SP) Diploma in Biomedical Science (DBS) via the Early Admissions Exercise.

The Anderson Secondary School alumnus knew that he would benefit from a polytechnic education as he wanted to gain interdisciplinary skills and industry-relevant skillsets to cope with the demands of the workplace.

Eager to apply the knowledge and skills gained during his studies, Jotham readily applied to volunteer as a Health Counsellor for diabetic patients under the NUHS Health Peers Programme. There, he helped and supported diabetic patients to better manage their conditions. He recalls an incident where an elderly patient could only converse in Mandarin, which was a challenge for him. Despite this, Jotham’s sincerity moved the patient and enabled him to build a rapport. “It is gratifying and heartwarming to see that I can apply the knowledge and skills gained from the course to help others on their recovery journey,” Jotham says. His enthusiasm to serve the community has also earned him the Alfred Robert Edis Prize.

During his internship at the National Heart Centre Singapore, he was impressed with the calibre and dedication of the doctors and medical professionals who selflessly tended to patients from all walks of life. He was especially empathetic with those from the lower income groups, and resolved to be part of the public healthcare system so that he would be able to help them in future.

Besides allowing him to apply his knowledge, volunteering has also helped the Lee Kuan Yew Award recipient to mature as a person. As the president of the SP Ultimate Frisbee team, he often had to rewrite approval documents for the club during the pandemic, due to the changing safe management measures. However, he took it as an opportunity to manage the club better by focusing on what is important instead of fussing over the smaller details.

Beyond SP, he hopes to study medicine and aspires to become a cardiologist in a public health institution.

SP Sustainability Matters