26 Sep 2020

Press Release
Saturday, 26 September 2020, 12PM


Record Number of SINDA Excellence Awards Recipients Signals Strong Community Performance


  • 26% increase in number of recipients, compared to last year’s cohort
  • Close to 20% of recipients benefitted from SINDA programmes
  • New ‘International and National Competitions’ category introduced to recognise more pathways


  1. Saturday, 26 September 2020 – SINDA commemorated its annual SINDA Excellence Awards (SEA) virtually this year, through a dedicated website to celebrate the achievements of students in the Indian community. SEA 2020 recognised 653 top-achievers across 19 categories in the academics, arts, sports, and technical skills. This is the highest number of recipients in the history of the awards.
  2. This significant increase across the wide spectrum of categories – 26% more than last year’s cohort size – showcased the diversity of paths pursued, with each recipient excelling in a path fitting his or her abilities and ambition. These accomplishments, and the values of hard work, determination and positive mindsets that underpinned such achievements, were lauded at SEA 2020, held virtually due to the ongoing Covid-19 climate.
  3. President of SINDA, Minister Indranee Rajah, acknowledged this upward trend in Indian students’ performance and the larger numbers: “With this increased number of award winners, we are heartened that more Indian students are doing better and achieving stellar results. And importantly, it also signals to us that the Indian community’s academic performance is on a very positive, upward trend. These accomplishments are also the collective achievement of the community, as it was driven by the support and encouragement of parents, schools, teachers, organisations and the wider community.”
  4. Addressing students virtually, Ms Indranee also reaffirmed the government’s emphasis on education as a social leveller, adding that “Education is, and will remain a priority for the government. It is an education system modelled upon the fundamental aim that our students must have the best possible start in life, through access to the right opportunities, guidance and resources. This is especially significant now, in this current climate of uncertainty, and we will continue to adapt our education approaches, so that our students will develop the required breadth and versatility, be well-equipped with the right skill sets to fulfil their aspirations and thrive in the future economy.”
  5. In recognising multiple pathways, the ‘International and National Competitions’ category was newly introduced this year. Through this category, SINDA acknowledged students who have represented Singapore in international sports meets or who have made achievements at WorldSkills competitions, covering a wide range of disciplines.
  6. One such recipient was 20-year-old Devesh Logendran, who participated in the WorldSkills competition held in Russia in August 2019, and represented Singapore in the field of cyber-security. Despite battling a medical condition, Devesh remained focused on the competition and emerged the bronze medal winner. He is currently a full-time National Servicemen and will be pursing Information Security at the National University of Singapore thereafter.
  7. Also among recipients lauded for their achievements was 34-year-old Kousalya d/o Selvakumar, who embodied the spirit of lifelong learning. Kousalya, a mother of four, received the SEA Award for attaining a Nitec Certificate of Merit in Nursing, and for making it onto the Director’s List every semester at ITE.
  8. Currently a Year 2 Nursing diploma student at Ngee Ann Polytechnic, Kousalya aspires to be a staff nurse in the paediatric or gynaecology field. “I’ve always felt that there is more I can do, more I can achieve and have not considered being a parent to be a setback. I believe that waiting for the perfect time to do something does not exist; if you want something, the perfect time to do it is now”, she added.
  9. Mr Anbarasu Rajendran, CEO, SINDA, shared that the organisation was focused on providing low-performing students as much educational assistance and opportunities as possible, to level them up and support their academic and life pursuits. “All of SINDA’s efforts are to ensure that no child is left behind due to a lack of access to opportunities. This is why I’m especially proud that almost 1 in 5 awardees this year were from SINDA’s programmes and that we could play a meaningful role in their progress and success,” he said.
  10. While commending their achievements, Mr Anbarasu also encouraged recipients to contribute back to society constructively through platforms such as the SINDA Excellence Awards Alumni and SINDA Youth Club. These platforms offer young achievers the opportunity to collaborate and find innovative ways to support disadvantaged youth and families in the Indian community and ultimately, the wider Singaporean society.
  11. SINDA performs regular reviews of the award presented at SEA and this year’s recipients will receive between $150 to $500, depending on their award category.


About the SINDA Excellence Awards

The SINDA Excellence Awards (SEA) are the highest honours presented by SINDA upon Indian students who have achieved excellence in their respective academic fields, the arts or sports. The success of these students is testament to their diligence, perseverance and passion to excel. In 2008 in line with the robust and changing educational landscape, SINDA started to recognise students who had excelled in the areas of sports and the arts in the spirit of holistic education. The inclusion of non-academic categories resulted in the awards being renamed as the SINDA Excellence Awards. The academic recipients this year range from PSLE students to local and overseas bachelor’s degree graduates. The Arts recipients include students who have excelled at their respective Arts institutions and Sports categories include students and youth who have obtained the Singapore Schools Sports Council Awards and/or had represented Singapore at competitions.


Categories in SEA 2020

  • Primary School Leaving Examinations
  • GCE O-Level
  • Integrated Programme
  • GCE A-Level
  • ITE Nitec
  • ITE Higher Nitec
  • International Baccalaureate
  • NUS High School of Maths and Science Diploma
  • ITE Technical Diploma
  • Lasalle College of the Arts Diploma
  • NAFA Diploma
  • NIE Diploma
  • Polytechnic Diploma
  • International and National Competitions
  • Lasalle College of The Arts Degree
  • NAFA Degree
  • Overseas Degree
  • Special Mention of Outstanding Achievements


New Category

The following sub-categories are part of the ‘International and National Competitions’ category:

  • Tertiary Sports
  • Singapore Schools Sports Council (SSSC) Special Colours Awards
  • WorldSkills Competitions


WorldSkills Competitions – Competing students take part in various skills areas which cover creative arts and fashion, infocomm technology, manufacturing and engineering technology, social and personal services, and transport and logistics. In recent years, new skills areas, such as cloud computing, water technology and chemical lab technology, have been included to introduce youth to emerging sectors.