Veterinary School is gifted £1m to foster international collaboration

Published: 6 July 2020

Gift is made by Singaporean alumnus who wanted to honour his former lecturer, Professor Ian McIntyre

The University of Glasgow’s Veterinary School has been gifted £1m by a former graduate who went on to have a distinguished career. Mr Tong Fatt Cheng served in the state Veterinary service in Singapore and then joined the diplomatic service in 1989 as Singapore Ambassador to Japan then to the People’s Republic of China and as Ambassador-at-Large until his retirement in 2004.

The generous gift by Mr Cheng, who graduated BVMS in 1957 from the University of Glasgow, will be used to establish the McIntyre International Research Fellowships which will foster international collaboration in research on farm animal diseases.

The Fellowships will provide funding for a British veterinary graduate to work overseas for two years and for an overseas veterinary graduate to come to the Glasgow Veterinary School for two years.

By establishing the McIntyre International Research Fellowships, Mr Cheng is paying tribute to Professor Ian McIntyre - the University’s first Professor of Veterinary Medicine. Professor McIntyre was an inspirational and innovative teacher, and a strong advocate for international collaboration in veterinary education and research. He was a leading member of the Glasgow team which developed the first antiparasitic vaccine for cattle (Dictol).Prof Ian McIntyre, UofG's first Professor of Veterinary Medicine

In his later career, Professor McIntyre was seconded to the University of East Africa In Nairobi and went on to make further contributions to veterinary medicine In Africa.

Mr Cheng said: “I am delighted to commemorate Professor McIntyre’s name in perpetuity through the creation of these international fellowships. Professor McIntyre was an inspiring teacher when I was a student at the University of Glasgow Veterinary School and I have always admired his achievements both in Glasgow and internationally. I hope that these fellowships will strengthen the links between the Glasgow Veterinary School and veterinary institutions overseas and benefit global animal health.”

Professor Peter Holmes, chair of the Veterinary Fund Committee which oversees charitable donations to the Veterinary School, said: “This gift is particularly relevant and valuable at a time when the world faces an unprecedented pandemic from a zoonotic disease – in other words, a disease that has been transmitted from animals to humans. This serves to remind us all of the importance of global approaches to disease control and these fellowships will be a highly effective way of facilitating international collaboration and co-operation in veterinary medicine in the future.”

Professor Ewan Cameron, Head of the Veterinary School, added: “As a School we are deeply honoured to receive this donation from such a distinguished alumnus who is in turn paying tribute to one of our most eminent former lecturers. We often talk about the University of Glasgow being ‘world-changing’ but here we see evidence that its academics and alumni have made a crucial difference in the field of veterinary medicine and that the recipients of this new fellowship will have the potential to make a real impact upon veterinary medicine in a global setting in the future.”

First published: 6 July 2020

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