Singapore, we have arrived! After nearly 40 hours in the air split between two groups arriving in Singapore over the past two days, the University of Illinois’ Global Leaders in Construction Management are eager to learn about and experience the Singaporean construction industry and culture.
The first group of Global Leaders to arrive checked into the hotel late yesterday morning after departing from O’Hare the evening of Jan. 1st. Having circled eastward around the globe for 13 hours, the first group landed in Qatar for a short three hour layover before boarding the final 7.5 hour flight towards Singapore. While waiting for the rest of the members to fly in, group one spent the rest of the day exploring some of the surrounding landscape while ending the evening with a nice dinner at Landmark Restaurant.
At 2AM this morning, the second group of Global Leaders finally landed after a brief 4 day “layover” in Hong Kong. Group two departed from O’Hare on Dec. 29th and flew for a solid 16 hours before landing in Hong Kong. Here, students celebrated the coming of the new year and were able to experience the culture of Hong Kong before boarding a plane for the final 4 hour stretch towards Singapore.
Both flights consisted of countless hours of reading, watching movies, boredom, and a LOT of sleeping. Thankfully no luggage was lost between the numerous flights. Having been part of the second crew, I can attest that arriving to Singapore at 2AM was a bit of a struggle. Nearly every student took the 4 hour flight as a window of opportunity to catch up on some much needed sleep before beginning the adventures of Singapore. Still sleepy-eyed after the late night flight, we made our way through immigration services and customs. Once our checked bags were collected, we were greeted by our incredibly sweet guide, Daisy from Asia Institute, who lead the way to our bus for the hotel. The warm humid Singapore air surrounded us as soon as we stepped outside the airport – some welcomed the nice change of weather in comparison to home, while others dreaded the idea of sweating through our PPE over the upcoming days.
While on the bus, Daisy explained some of the basics on where to exchange money, transportation throughout Singapore, hotel accommodations, the program agenda and even passed around a booklet containing all the information we would need while in both Singapore and Kuala Lumpur. Once we made it to the hotel, suitcases were unpacked and each of us quickly made way to our rooms to get some rest in before beginning the first of the site visits. I believe I speak for the entire GLCM class when I say, we are MORE than excited to partake in the upcoming site visits and cultural experiences.
Blog by Olivia Geiger