Newly Arrived Students: Thanawat & Phichanida Wichaphon (Off & Peung)

L-R: Rev Jonathan Yao (seated), Wong Ee Yuing, Boon-Koh Aitee, Phichanida Wichaphon (Peung), Thanawat Wichaphon (Off)

Thanawat & Phichanida Wichaphons are the first couple to have arrived in Singapore from Thailand for our new semester this June. They are better known by their nicknames Off and Peung. Off has been enrolled in Master of Arts in Intercultural Studies since July 2022 and Peung has been attending online Partners-in-Ministry classes. They are thrilled to finally take the classes at EAST on-site in the upcoming semester and have face to face interactions with faculty, students and staff.

EAST News had the opportunity to ask a few questions below to get to know this “cool couple” (as some of their friends have described them) better and share their journey to EAST.

  1. What led Off to study MAICS and Peung to take PIM classes at EAST?

Is it fair to say it was not my choice (Off)? It might not. But my plan for MA study started before we got married in 2006. We aimed to get married and enrol in an institute together as we wanted to serve in full-time ministry. After we got married, that plan never happened. We continued to serve full-time in student ministry. 2010 we prepared ourselves again to leave everything behind and apply for a Missions-minded institute. The door shut during the preparation process. Two years later I was offered to study full time in another institute. The Lord said, “Not yet.” MA in theology plan for me seemed to be something that never came true. The more I was involved in ministry, the less possibility it seemed to happen.

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Graduands’ Testimonies

Left: Japheth Chew, Right: Lee Poh Chin (EAST Graduands 2023)


EAST News (EN) had an opportunity to have a chat with both Japheth Chew (JC) and Lee Poh Chin (PC), both of whom will graduate on 20 May 2023. Japheth came to EAST in December 2021 from Petaling Jaya, Malaysia, to pursue a Graduate Diploma. During his studies, he has also served as the EAST Student Council Vice President and worshipped at Cornerstone Community Church. Poh Chin, a Singaporean, has served in the education sector for a few decades, both locally and overseas, before starting an EAST Master of Arts program in July 2020. She currently worships at Covenant Evangelical Free Church and was a core-team leader of the Hillington Green Covenant Group (CG) before it went back to on-site meetings.

Below is an extract of the short interview done with both of them by Tan Eng Kwang (Associate Dean of Advancement) regarding their experiences at EAST.

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Clare’s EASTperience


A day before my flight to Singapore, I questioned myself again “Is this what God wants me to do? Did I make the right decision to go to Singapore for my theological education?” Just as always, God spoke to me through His word and I am assured that this is His next step and direction for me.

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Korean Alumnus served in New Zealand: Eric Lee Jaesun


EAST Korean Alumnus Mr Eric Lee Jaesun came to EAST to pursue his Master of Arts in Intercultural Studies in 2016 and completed the program in May 2018. EAST News caught up with how he has been doing since his graduation with some short interview questions below.

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Alumni Updates from Ukhrul, Manipur


EAST alumni Asung Pharung and Nim Muivah graduated in May 2019 with a Master of Arts in Intercultural Studies and Partners in Ministry Certificate respectively. They have since returned to life in a small town, Ukhrul, Manipur, Northeast India with a population of 92,000 people. Just last Saturday, the Pharungs welcomed their third child, a newborn baby girl named Selah Pharung on 16 Jan 2021. Life has indeed been full and fruitful for them.

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