Meet Our Summer Associates (Part 1)

Friday May 31,2019 | From Our Office


This year, LCSI is excited to welcome a total of 10 summer interns as part of the Summer Associates Programme. Over an 8 to 10 week programme from May till August, they will be given opportunities to gain hands-on learning experience and work on meaningful projects in social innovation, in addition to masterclasses to hone their skills. Get to know these up and coming changemakers below.


Check out Meet our Summer Associates (Part 2)



Cheryl Lim Yang Xi

Multimedia & Marketing Associate (Social Space) | Rising junior at SMU Lee Kong Chian School of Business majoring in Marketing



Cheryl is interested in both Marketing and Media production, and is curious in exploring the interdependence of both disciplines. In her free time, Cheryl enjoys acting and volunteering. She has played many different roles in multiple productions and embarked on her own directing and scriptwriting escapade and her first self-directed film won Best Production Awardi in the SMUBE’s 48H Film Competition 2019. She was presented Best Volunteer Award by Madam Halimah Yacob last year for her service in Heartware Network’s Support Our Pioneers Program.


Q: Why did you choose this internship?

I chose this internship because LCSI is able to provide me with the autonomy and flexibility in creating content which I am interested in and passionate about. Also, the masterclasses appealed to me because I am always keen to learn from others.


Q: What's one thing your friends don’t know about you?

My friends don’t know that I keep a book with records of their likes and dislikes so that I will not be entirely clueless when it’s time to get gifts for them.


Q: What is your favourite movie?

I can’t decide between Se7en and A Tale of Two Sisters. I have always enjoyed reading and watching psychological thrillers. The ending of the former was particularly haunting and the latter is just brilliant in terms of cinematography and storyline.



Diego Caceres

Social Media Associate (Shirin Fozdar Programme) | Rising sophomore at the University of Pennsylvania double majoring in Political Science and Sociology



Diego is interested in the intersection between policy-making and uplifting marginalized groups by tackling social issues. With aims to give back to his community, Diego is involved in various groups back at Penn such as the Latinx Coalition and Penn First, both advocacy groups for both his Latinx and First-Generation, Low-income background. He’s also keen on the details, loving photography and being involved with the Creative Team of a Latinx magazine at Penn known as La Vida.


Q: Why did you choose this internship?

I choose this internship mainly because it combines two of my favorite things: creating informative, media content as well as empowering women. Being able to develop and advertise programs aimed at the development of women not only teaches me skills of how to give a platform to a traditionally marginalised group but also give back to my community, including the strong group of women who have mentored me.


Q: Is there something about you/your life that confuses you? And alternatively, what keeps you grounded?

Maybe not confuses me but it’s something that took me a while to get a grasp on, the lack of a constant in life and that change is interwoven in the fabric of our lives. If we are not constantly changing, we are not living and where’s the fun in that?


Q: What song best describes you or your life?

While this varies from time to time, I feel like a song that just characterises my life really well is Rie y Llora by Celia Cruz. Meaning “Laugh and Cry” in Spanish, the song is about living your life at the max, whether it is your highs or lows. I feel that the acknowledgment of both allows me to be more present and therefore happier with the moments of life.




Do Youn Lee

Editorial Associate (Social Space) | Rising senior at Yale-NUS College majoring in Global Affairs and minoring in Philosophy



Do Youn Lee runs the Yale-NUS Chamber Music Collective, where she plays the violin and organises concerts every semester. Previously, she worked as a programme management intern at the ASEAN Foundation and a board member at the International Association for Political Science Students.


Q: Why did you choose this internship?

I chose this internship because LCSI focuses on a diverse range of minorities. In philosophy class, I learned that we should take a holistic view of oppression and consider minorities who are marginalised in different dimensions, such as gender and socioeconomic status. LCSI’s broad range of constituencies, such as persons with disabilities, the elderly, and single-parent households, motivated me to intern here!

Also, advocating for social issues and non-academic writing is what I used to do a lot back in Korea, but never really got around to doing in college. I hope to continue what I used to do back home by writing for the Social Space Magazine!


Q: Tell me some fun facts about yourself.

In high school, I was an avid lacrosse player. In senior year, I couldn’t play as much because I needed to prepare for college admissions, but I would still grab my lacrosse stick, which gave me a rush of energy, and I would continue studying haha! I also used to have hermit crabs as pets (now I am one when it gets too hot).


Q: Who is someone you admire?

The person I admire the most is my grandmother. She is the most hardworking and talented person I have ever seen in my life. She single-handedly raised two sons and also took care of her five grandchildren. She is an amazing swimmer and driver. She has such a deep passion for learning that she studies English every day. She even took computer classes and now she has a YouTube channel. There are so many things I admire about her and every day I aspire to be like her.



Esther Tan

Editorial Associate (Social Space) | Rising sophomore at NUS, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences double majoring in English Language and Japanese Studies



As a major of both English Language and Japanese Studies, Esther enjoys learning about how language and culture intersect and shapes us into who we are. In Junior College, she was involved in Writer’s Guild in Raffles Institution, where she honed her creative writing skills by writing poetry and prose. Now, she hopes to sharpen other writing skills in reporting and editorials.


Q: What do you hope to do in your future career?

I hope to be able to put my three languages (English, Japanese, Mandarin) to good use and facilitate communication between different parties. I believe that effective communication is the bedrock for good relationships, so it’s really important to get the message across as accurately as possible!


Q: What would you tell your younger writing self?

Throw out the fancy, complicated metaphors and get straight to the point. Forget about having detailed descriptions about everything and focus on what matters the most in this scene.


Q: Could you write a 3 line love poem (for a confession) in Japanese?

今からは From now
もう言いたくない I don’t want to say that anymore,
「友だけ」と “Just friends”




Gabrielle Cheong

Editorial Associate (Social Space) | Rising junior at Yale-NUS College majoring in History



Gabrielle likes to deconstruct the narratives behind the relationships, culture, and policies that shape our daily lives. When not fantasising about her favourite comics, books and movies, she is running her school’s Residential College Council. Previously, Gabrielle volunteered with the Meet-the-People Sessions, the National Parks Board at Pulau Ubin, and was a member of the Community for Advocacy and Political Education (CAPE).


Q: Why did you choose this internship and how does it relate to your career goals?

I wanted to work with a research centre because I’m thinking of joining a think tank eventually, and I also wanted to learn more about social service and the nonprofit scene. So the Lien Centre for Social Innovation (LCSI) seemed like the perfect place! I like that LCSI has a very positive approach to social issues, in that they try to highlight the work of even small initiatives, organizations and startups. It’s definitely a nice change from what most of the news is putting out, and it’s very inspiring!


Q: Do you have an interesting story to share?

Back in Junior College, I formed a busking group with some of my friends in the drama club - part of a school initiative to raise funds for the Singapore Association for Mental Health. None of us had much of a music background - we couldn’t even play any instruments - so we just sang and danced to a track of Disney songs that I edited. We even had costumes. Every other band looked like they knew what they were doing, and we were just dressing up in flower was a real test of confidence, but also one of the most fun things I did.


Q: What’s a hobby/small activity that you’re really passionate about?

I play bridge! At one point I was really obsessed and my friends still tease me about it. I’m still not very good but the logic behind it is really fascinating, and it teaches me to be more careful and methodical in my thinking processes.