Irene Tan Liang Kheng Empowerment Award

The Irene Tan Liang Kheng Empowerment Award is established to provide financial assistance to deserving students pursuing their studies at SUTD.


  • Open to Singapore Citizens and Singapore Permanent Residents
  • Demonstrated financial need (monthly household PCI $2,500 and below)
  • Good moral character and community spirit
  • Preference will be given to junior or senior students in any degree programme and to students pursuing studies or projects related to healthcare


  • Each Award is tenable for one academic year only
  • Recipients may reapply to be considered for the Award in their subsequent year of study, subject to meeting the eligibility criteria

Benefits of Award

  • S$5,000 or S$5,500 per academic year (The latter shall be granted to students who demonstrate a greater financial need compared to other recipients.)

Things to Note

Each Award shall be applied towards the payment of a stipend to the recipient for study-related purposes.

The late Madam Irene Tan Liang Kheng was known for her gentleness and love towards her husband, family, and friends. She was not just a loving and caring wife, but also a faithful friend and a wise investor. She chose to invest in people and in her friendships. She was loving and kind to those around her and valued relationships.
In her later years, Madam Tan became active with charity work. Even when she was battling her own cancer later on, she continued to give generously of her wealth and meticulously planned her will to ensure that the legacy of giving would continue even after her passing. Madam Tan passed away on 13 February 2016.
It was Madam Tan’s deep desire to continue the “Legacy of Giving” of her late husband, Mr Ong Tiong Tat and their trusted friend, the late Mr Koh Choon Joo. Mr Koh and Mr Ong had contributed their funds to four key areas – General Education & Teachers’ Education, Medical Researches & Education and Healthcare, Community & Social Services and Law Education. The Estates wish to continue in their legacy of supporting education for the deserving students.
Mr Koh and the late Ongs believed in elevating the poor through access to education. Their generous nature can be seen in the many donations to the various educational institutions. To quote them: “Nurturing young people by increasing their access to education is the best investment we can make to shape our collective future, and this is the best legacy we can leave behind for the next generations.”
The Irene Tan Liang Kheng Empowerment Award aims to support students who are “of integrity, humble, passionate about helping others” and who require financial assistance so that they can complete their education and start the ripple of kindness in society.