Princeton's unique blend

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 16 November, 1995, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 22 February, 2014, 2:27pm

THE article headlined, 'Asian 'mediocrity' lost out to Wu's Princeton' (South China Morning Post, November 11), inferred that Princeton University actively solicited money from Mr Gordon Wu. It ignores the fact that Princeton consistently ranks at or near the top among US universities in 'student or alumni satisfaction', and that many individual contributions to the school come voluntarily from happy alumni like Mr Wu.

Indeed, well over 90 per cent of the Class of 1995 have already pledged to contribute this year.

While I disagree with comparing schools across countries, I believe Princeton's curriculum provides a unique blend of engineering science and liberal arts study. Over the years, a number of students from Hong Kong have benefited from this vital combination.

While I was there (1990-5), Hong Kong students did exceptionally well, winning university prizes for the top sophomore and the top junior students, and in the School of Engineering, both school-wide and departmental awards for top student, best senior thesis, and so on.

Contrary to the view taken by your article, I thank Mr Wu for his generosity. Local universities could perhaps use Princeton's example by establishing strong student loyalty and lasting alumni ties. The day will come when local institutions will receive a donation comparable to Mr Wu's contribution to his alma mater.