Finding His Voice and Meeting His Goal in SMU

By Lim Yong Chuan, SMU School of Accountancy


Why did you join SMU?”

It’s an often-asked question.

“Why not NTU? You can finish it in three years, incur lesser fees, and start earning money one year earlier than your SMU peers,” remarked a close friend.

Yes, I thought a lot about that. I did choose NTU at the start, but eventually, I decided to go with SMU—the different U. That’s because I recalled a goal I set 5 years ago, in 2013:

“I wish to speak, on stage, confidently, with a smile, without stage fright, to a crowd.”

“Why this goal even?”

Well, in 2013, when I was an Accounting and Finance student at Temasek Polytechnic, I joined the NTU Audit and Accounting Challenge. I witnessed how a team from SMU blew away the judges and audience with their confident presentation onstage—despite being given only 2 hours to work on a case on FRS 41 Agriculture (Olam vs Muddy)!

I was awestruck!

I thought I was good with presentations until I saw how the SMU team presented!

“Olam faithfully adopted FRS 41 Agriculture. They recognised changes in fair value of their bearer plants onto the balance sheet. We as a team believe that their fundamentals are strong, and Muddy’s claims are unsubstantiated”, proclaimed the SMU team.

Well, something to that effect, at least. I may not remember exactly what they said, but I will never forget HOW they said it, even until today.

I remember thinking to myself then as I watched the team present, “This is how strong SMU students are in public speaking. I wish I can be like them!”

So, when I had to choose my university, I chose SMU, because I believe, SMU’s seminar-style of teaching and distinct teaching pedagogy will push me to greater heights.

“I wish that one day I will be like the presenting SMU students—confident, vocal, and outspoken, and I hope I can win a competition too!”

And I did.


Reaching That Goal


Representing SMU at the MSIG Insurance Risk Management Challenge 2018


Five years later, in 2018, I represented SMU at the MSIG Insurance Risk Management Challenge 2018, broke into the finals, and finally emerged as champion with my trusty teammates! (First time in my life!)

But this was possible only through the SMU learning environment where I really learnt to speak up; with the support of my friends, who challenged me to push myself beyond what I thought was possible; and through the wizardly professors (they don’t carry wands but they certainly seem to do ‘magic’), who taught me how to think critically and learn how to learn.

Looking back, winning the challenge was not my greatest achievement. Instead…

“I became the very person I envisioned and always hoped I would become.”

Now that is one achievement which not many can proudly proclaim.

I found my voice at SMU, a Different U. Take the next step with SMU and you can do it too.


Keen to take the next step with SMU? Join our SMU Bachelor of Accountancy programme today.