16 July 2019
Associate Professor LOH Chiang Shiong is the Faculty’s First Honorary Fellow
Associate Prof LOH Chiang Shiong from NUS’ Department of Biological Sciences (DBS) was appointed Honorary Fellow in July 2019.
Prof Loh is the Faculty’s inaugural recipient of the National University of Singapore (NUS)’ new Honorary Fellowship scheme, which recognises retired Associate Professors for their positive contributions at the University- and Faculty- level.
Prof Loh obtained his M.Sc. in 1978 from the then University of Singapore and his Ph.D. from the University of Cambridge in 1982.
Prof Loh is known for his research in plant tissue culture, including somatic embryogenesis, haploid production, artificial seeds, protoplast culture, plant regeneration and in vitro flowering. One notable finding of his laboratory is a method to induce flowering of Dendrobium orchid hybrids in culture as early as about five months after seed germination, instead of two to three years under normal conditions. The flowers from these mini-plants are able to produce seeds in culture. This allows the early assessment of hybrid flower characteristics and greatly shortens the breeding period. This is highly beneficial to the breeders and the orchid industry. Another notable discovery is a unique pattern of secretion from the salt glands of mangrove species. This has implications in desalination research as it provides insights on how natural systems such as mangrove plants desalinate seawater.
As the Faculty’s Sub-Dean (1998 - 1999), Prof Loh chaired the UROPS (Undergraduate Research Opportunities Programme in Science) Committee, seeking to provide unique opportunities for students to engage in research and intellectual discourse with scientists in specific fields. He chaired the NUROPS (National Undergraduate Research Opportunities Programme) Congress Committee (1998), which provided students a platform to build networks and cross-disciplinary collaborations. Prof Loh also led the Science SEP (Student Exchange Programme) and Graduate Committee, and actively contributed to the Faculty’s outreach programmes.
Prof Loh is passionate about teaching. He likes to use props and live plant materials in his lectures to facilitate learning. Prof Loh has received multiple University- and Faculty-level awards for teaching excellence. He was also the recipient of the NUS Long Service Award (2009, 2014) and the National Day Long Service Award (2010).
Dean of Science Prof SHEN Zuowei said, “We congratulate Prof Loh on being conferred the Honorary Fellowship. Chiang Shiong is recognised among his peers as an outstanding educator and we are grateful for his many contributions to the Faculty and the department.”
Prof Loh said, “I am thankful and honoured to receive this Fellowship. NUS is like my second home. The last 36.5 years working here have been very fulfilling and enjoyable.”