Kwek Kok Kwong
Kwek Kok Kwong
|Education||Bachelor of Arts (Mathematics), Master of Arts (Statistics and Quantum Physics), Master of Public Policy|
|Alma mater||University of Cambridge, Harvard University|
Kwek Kok Kwong (1967 - 2020) was the Chief Executive Officer of NTUC LearningHub. As the CEO of the Singapore-based training and education provider, he had more recently been involved in the up-skilling of workers in light of the digital age. He was also the Chair of the Singapore National Cooperative Federation (SNCF) since 2016 and a member of the International Cooperative Alliance (ICA) Global Board since 2017. Before entering the social enterprise industry, Kwek Kok Kwong served in the Singapore army for over 20 years.
Kwek Kok Kwong was an alumnus of Victoria School (1980-1983) and subsequently, Victoria Junior College (1984-1985). As a SAF overseas scholar, he furthered his studies at the University of Cambridge where he graduated with a degree in Mathematics. Kwek Kok Kwong also held two graduate degrees. In 1993, he obtained a Masters of Arts having majored in Statistics and Quantum Physics. He then received a Master of Public Administration from the Harvard University Kennedy School of Government in 2002 with the Lucius N. Littauer Fellow distinction.
Kwek Kok Kwong was an avid athlete, having participated in marathons and taken up cycling as a hobby. He was married and had two children; a son and a daughter.
Kwek Kok Kwong passed away on 14 November 2020 at the age of 53. According to news reports, he had collapsed after a cycling session. On a Facebook group created in remembrance of Kwek Kok Kwong, the Singapore politician and CEO of NTUC Fairprice, Seah Kian Peng said the following:
“KK (Kok Kwong) - a leader, a team player, a friend, a colleague, a sportsman, a life long learner, a father, a husband, an officer and a gentleman. He is all that and more...”
According to TODAY Online, over 600 people have joined the Facebook group as of 15 November. As of 20 November 2020, the number has increased to over 900 members. The International Cooperative Alliance (ICA) has also compiled tributes from their global board members in light of Kwek Kok Kwong’s sudden passing.
Kwek Kok Kwong has contributed his leadership and industry expertise to organisations such as the International Co-operative Alliance (ICA). After being nominated by the Singapore National Cooperative Federation (SNCF), Kwek Kok Kwong was elected in the ICA Global Board in November 2017 where he was tasked to foster greater collaboration between international cooperatives. In his candidate video, he said the following:
"One of the areas we can collaborate in is in dealing with the ageing population. Singapore is one of the fastest ageing populations in the world. In April this year (2017), I shared these solutions at the ASEAN Co-operative Ministerial Conference and received much interest (in collaboration)... cooperatives around the world can come together to share solutions as well as to network and collaborate at a greater level."
Kwek Kok Kwong, then the CEO of NTUC LearningHub, was involved in securing a partnership with the social enterprise, Caregiver Asia to upgrade the skill-set of freelance home caregivers in Singapore through Workforce Skills Qualification (WSQ) courses.
Early career in the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF)
After graduating from Cambridge University in 1989, Kwek Kok Kwong joined the SAF where he served for over two decades. In 2009, he attained the rank of brigadier-general in the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF). He left the SAF in 2012.
CEO at NTUC LearningHub (2013 - 2020)
In February 2013, Kwek Kok Kwong was appointed as the CEO of NTUC LearningHub, an educational and training provider based in Singapore. Speaking to JobStreet Singapore in 2019 about his career switch, he said:
“I was looking for an industry where I would be able to make a social impact. As a social enterprise, NTUC LearningHub provided me (with) the opportunity to be involved in the betterment of society.”
In his capacity as the CEO, Kwek Kok Kwong helmed the social enterprise’s vision to up-skill workers through training programmes and industry-relevant courses. The following section provides some examples of his portfolio at NTUC LearningHub in recent years.
In 2018, Kwek Kok Kwong spearheaded NTUC LearningHub's Healthcare Academy initiative to train healthcare workers who are impacted by the digitalisation of medical records and patient services. That same year, NTUC LearningHub secured a partnership with the American publisher, John Wiley & Sons (Wiley) to update the former's curriculum. In partnership with SkillsFutureSG, Shopee, LinkedIn and the digital security firm, Avast, NTUC LearningHub launched new classes on e-commerce, employability and cybersecurity in 2019; as a part of its SkillsFuture for Digital Workplace (SFDW) course. Kwek Kok Kwong has also signed Memorandums of Understanding (MoU) with companies such as Changi Airport Group and ST Logistics to up-skill their respective workforces.
- Changi Airport Group. "Changi Airport Group to upskill employees for digital transformation". Mynewsdesk. December 2, 2019. Accessed on 18 November 2020.
- "ST Logistics signs MoUs with NTUC LearningHub & NUS for upskilling of Singapore's logistics workforce". International Business Times. January 31, 2019. Accessed on 18 November 2020.
- "Media Release - Mr Kwek Kok Kwong, CEO of NTUC LearningHub, takes over as Chairman of Singapore National Co-operative Federation". Singapore National Co-operative Federation. September 16, 2016. Accessed on 18 November 2020.
- "Cooperative movement pays tribute to Kwek Kok Kwong". International Co-operative Alliance. November 17, 2020. Accessed on 18 November 2020.
- Victoria School Singapore. "We are saddened by the passing of our alumni Mr Kwek Kok Kwong...". Facebook. November 16, 2020. Accessed on 18 November 2020.
- Tang, Louisa. "NTUC LearningHub CEO Kwek Kok Kwong dies at age 53". TODAYOnline. November 15, 2020. Accessed on 18 November 2020.
- "Kwek Kok Kwong". NTUC LearningHub. Accessed on 18 November 2020.
- "In loving memory of BG (Ret) Kwek Kok Kwong CEO, NTUC LearningHub passed away on 14 November 2020". SPH Obits. November 16, 2020. Accessed on 18 November 2020.
- Iau, Jean. "NTUC LearningHub CEO Kwek Kok Kwong dies at age 53". The Straits Times. November 16, 2020. Accessed on 18 November 2020.
- "NTUC LearningHub chief executive Kwek Kok Kwong dies aged 53". The New Paper. November 16, 2020. Accessed on 18 November 2020.
- Seah Kian Peng. Facebook. November 16, 2020. Accessed on 18 November 2020. Retrieved from: https://m.facebook.com/groups/3101372140190049/permalink/3102001733460423/
- "General Assembly 2017 Candidates". International Co-operative Alliance. Accessed on 18 November 2020.
- Campusintern. "Newly elected president of ICA // Mr Kwek Kok Kwong elected in the ICA Global Board". Scoop. November 22, 2017. Accessed on 18 November 2020.
- SNCF (Singapore National Co-operative Federation). "Greater Together - KK Singapore". YouTube. November 1, 2017. Accessed on 18 November 2020.
- "NTUC Health and NTUC LearningHub Collaborate with CaregiverAsia to Provide Caregiver Services, Training and Employment Opportunities for Caregivers". Caregiver Group. April 27, 2017. Accessed on 18 November 2020.
- "Paving the way for businesses to combat disruption". The Business Times. October 15, 2019. Accessed on 18 November 2020.
- "In Conversation With: Mr. Kwek Kok Kwong, CEO of NTUC LearningHub". JobStreet Singapore. September 9, 2019. Accessed on 18 November 2020.
- "Healthcare Academy formed to help workers stay employable". NTUC. August 27, 2018. Accessed on 18 November 2020.
- NTUC LearningHub. "Wiley Seminar - Mr Kwek Kok Kwong". Facebook. June 19, 2018. Accessed on 18 November 2020.
- "Shopee, LinkedIn, Avast roll out SkillsFuture classes on digital skills". The Straits Times. September 13, 2019. Accessed on 18 November 2020.