Kheng Hoon SP 2024

Ng Kheng Hoon

Diploma in Media, Arts & Design (DMAD) specialising in Applied Drama and Psychology (ADP)

  • Tan Kay Yong Gold Medal
  • Media, Arts & Design School Prize

A compassionate advocate for mental health who champions community engagement

Since secondary school, Ng Kheng Hoon has been interested in photography, having been influenced by her hobbyist photographer father. The photo albums her father had lying around the house contained portrait shots he took of his friends and himself, which piqued her interest in the art form. She eventually delved deeper into the world of shutter speeds, ISO settings, lighting techniques, and lighting angles to create different atmospheres and moods in her photography.

Having graduated from Orchid Park Secondary School, Kheng Hoon pursued a Higher Nitec in Filmmaking (Cinematography) at the Institute of Technical Education (ITE).

Entering ITE with little understanding of its culture, Kheng Hoon felt like she was left behind, trying to grasp the sudden change of environment, which took a toll on her mental health and severely impacted her grades. However, with the encouragement and support of some of her peers in similar situations, she discovered her strengths and eventually graduated from ITE.

The Tan Kay Yong Gold Medallist enrolled in Singapore Polytechnic’s (SP) Diploma in Media, Arts & Design (DMAD) via the Early Admissions Exercise (EAE) and opted for the Applied Drama and Psychology (ADP) specialisation as it offered a unique combination of drama and psychology.

In 2023, she took on the position of production manager in a student-written and directed musical performance led by the SP Theatre Compass. Titled ‘Faults’, the performance, produced in collaboration with SP Vocal Talents, SP Piano Ensemble, SP Photography Club and SP Videography Club, was one of the first of its kind in the club’s history as it was almost wholly led and directed by students. Kheng Hoon cites this experience as one of the most memorable experiences she had in SP due to the scale of the production and the responsibilities she held, having to manage issues of miscommunication and resolve disagreements between group members amicably, all whilst working around a narrow window of time for rehearsals.

Kheng Hoon interned at the Mental Health Film Festival Singapore (MHFFS), a non-profit organisation that uses films as a catalyst to spark conversations about mental health. She jumped at the opportunity to work at MHFFS as it seemed to be the most befitting of her innate desire to contribute to the community and film. She works part-time with MHFFS as a programmes assistant and enjoys the creative processes of curating films, planning workshops and being involved in outreach work with the community.

She was also one of the pioneering leaders in the Media, Arts & Design School (MAD)’s student interest group Re/Define, a newsroom by MAD students. Here, she assisted in creating a short YouTube video for Autism Awareness Day, which was made in collaboration with Temasek Foundation. The video was submitted to the 2022 Crowbar Awards and emerged as a finalist.

Amidst the slew of overstimulating content on social media, Kheng Hoon firmly believes in slowing down and stopping to smell the roses. She also wishes to create more minimalistic yet impactful content on mental health, as well as narratives about appreciating the world around us.

The humble yet ambitious go-getter has accepted an offer from Singapore Management University’s (SMU) College of Integrative Studies and hopes to combine modules in psychology, sociology, and design and media to create a unique degree. Her ambition lies in exploring a combination of community engagement and digital media.

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