HKUST celebrates its 26th Congregation

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A University of Diversity and Innovative and holistic learning

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 20 November, 2018, 5:59pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 20 November, 2018, 5:59pm

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A University of Diversity

When students first arrive at the HKUST campus, many are surprised at its highly diverse student body.  One in four students at HKUST come from outside of Hong Kong - the proportion of the University’s international students is the highest in the city.

HKUST’s vision of diversity is also shared by our students.  They often take the initiative to host welcoming gatherings for newcomers from different cultures. As another example, our students collaborated with classmates from India, Greece, US and Korea to produce a 110-minute feature film. 

Diversity is not just about race, but also about gender and ability.  To promote diversity in all dimensions, HKUST organized the first workshop in Asia to attract quality female candidates into the traditionally male-dominated engineering academia sector. We also hosted events on the International Women’s Day earlier this year to reinforce the importance of gender diversity.  The University has revisited its admission criteria and introduced new scholarships to attract students with talents and achievements in non-academic areas.  HKUST continues to enhance resources for students with special educational needs (SEN), a creative campaign called DiversAbility was recently organized for students to experience the daily obstacles met by those who are physically challenged. 


Diversity is essential for the development of a global mindset.  In order to nurture our students into global citizens, apart from offering an international study environment on our campus, we also provide them with different opportunities in research, exchange and internship with over 260 global partners.  Our student teams – many of which comprise of members from different backgrounds and origins, often have an advantage in global competitions due to their diverse nature. 


Innovative and holistic learning

In a world where sustainable development, wealth distribution and international order are at stake, university students, who are future leaders and global citizens, are expected to help address these pressing global challenges.  To achieve this, innovative thinking and a holistic mindset are fundamental requirements.


HKUST encourages its students to put ideas to test, and one of the most effective ways is for the University to turn itself into a testing ground.  Over the past 27 years, HKUST has broken new ground and introduced transformative learning methods and programs, which not only allow students to acquire technical skills for their areas of expertise, but also develop a cross-disciplinary mindset that allows them to create original solutions in a rapidly changing environment.


 A decade ago, HKUST introduced UROP, then a very new idea allowing undergraduate students to have a taste of research under faculty’s supervision. Nowadays, HKUST continues to develop new pedagogies.  We are the first in Hong Kong to allow students to design their own curriculum and the first to collaborate with partners like Coursera, EdX and the Minerva Project to bring the latest digital learning tools and information to our students.  We have also run the first project-based program in Hong Kong that assesses students’ ability by their problem-solving skills with input from industry players.

 At HKUST, it’s not just about learning hard knowledge.  We blend humanities, social science and social services into the curriculum so science, engineering and business students will also be able to appreciate art, culture, music and develop a sense of responsibility towards society.  Over the years, we have been happy to see that regardless of what our students do – be they entrepreneurs or employees who find new solution to an age-old problem, their ideas and sense of social responsibility have helped make the world a better place.