Tembusu Formal Dinner


The first formal dinner saw five different houses of Tembusu College named after five endangered species of Asian animals in its native language. The elephant or Gaja, the red panda or Ponya, the crane or Tancho, the Komodo dragon or Ora, and the snow leopard or Shan.

During the dinner, Prof. Tommy Koh shared his ambitions for Tembusu College to have the happiest students, the most international, inclusive and harmonious student body, and also to have the richest collegiate life, intellectually, socially and culturally.

The Tembusu (Fagraea fragrans) is a large evergreen tree in the family Gentianaceae. It is native to Southeast Asia. Its trunk is dark brown, with deeply fissured bark, looking somewhat like a bittergourd. It grows in an irregular shape from 10 to 25m high. Its leaves are light green and oval in shape. Its yellowish flowers have a distinct fragrance and the fruits of the tree are bitter tasting red berries, which are eaten by birds and fruit bats.