Discontinued ColumnsGlobal Insight
Geared Up Towards the FutureThe Univ. of Hong Kong
Seo Ja-kyung Assisstant Reporter  |  letmesmilej@naver.com
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승인 2005.10.01  00:00:00
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REPORTEDLY,
A throng of top Mainland Chinese high school graduates is refusing to follow the conventional path towards Peking Univ. and Tsinghua Univ. Instead, according to the Chosun Ilbo, they are flying over to Hong Kong to enter the Univ. of Hong Kong. What advantages and merits does the Univ. of Hong Kong possess for it to surpass its Mainland competitors and ultimately attract the highest achievers?
As the first university founded in Hong Kong, its status has been elevated to an internationally preeminent university in Asia, ranking 39th in world’s top universities by The Times. It is located on Hong Kong Island where all the central activities and commerce of Hong Kong take place. Because of the limited size of the Hong Kong territory, the college had connected all buildings through escalators and elevators for effective use of the space. Although the aggregate size of the university is small compared to that of Yonsei Univ., it accommodates not only basic classrooms but also a swimming pool, basketball court and even dormitories. Specifically, ten different kinds of dormitories welcome both domestic and international students with each dorm’s distinctive culture and tradition.
The university is made up of ten faculties that encompass various areas of study and 50 undergraduate departments under them. Around 90% of the courses are taught in English, enabling exchange students to study with Hong Kong’s local students. Along with the large percentage of English classes, the university boasts distinguished overseas professors comprising 45% of the academic staff. Also, it has installed a separate tutorial program where teaching assistants lead active discussions as a way to enrich students’ academic experiences. “The professors expect creative results from students by allowing them more flexibility on class projects,” says Kim Kyu-sik (Sr., Dept. of Business Admin.), a 2005 Univ. of Hong Kong exchange student.
Ranging from sports activities and clubs to buddy programs connecting the local students and international students, the Univ. of Hong Kong guarantees various learning experiences outside the classrooms. Students living in dormitories can take part in a regular formal party called ‘high table dinner’ to which renowned guest speakers are invited to speak. “Overall school activities were much more diverse than Yonsei?. For example, the Student Association got sponsors from major corporations and planned a New York trip for students last year,” continues Kim. Outside, the city of Hong Kong is always ready to provide boundless opportunities to exchange students. Besides enjoying the 24-hour shopping and night scene, students can seize the chance to take part in internships and international festivals.
Recently, Asia’s richest man, Hong Kong tycoon Li Ka-shing donated 13 million US dollars to the Univ. of Hong Kong. With ample funds in hand, the university is now working on strategic future development plans to become one of the top 25 universities in the world.
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