Two Baptist University (HKBU) students have been suspended for a second time for their roles in a campus stand-off against a Mandarin language graduation requirement.
The university has barred former student union president Lau Tsz-kei, 20, for one semester, while Chinese medicine student Andrew Chan Lok-hang, 22, received an eight-day suspension as well as 40 hours of community service at the university.
The latest twist came after HKBU lifted their first suspensions over a campus protest, after the pair apologised to language centre staff in person. They were initially suspended in January, as the university said they posed a danger to the community.
Nicholas Ng, 16, of South Island School, said the one semester suspension was unfair. “I’d go for a three- to four-week suspension because it gives them time to reflect but at the same time makes sure they don’t miss too much of their education,” says Nicholas.
Leeann Tong, 16, from Sha Tin College, says she now has a bad impression of HKBU. “If the university cannot stick with their own decision about what punishment those students should receive, then why should I, or any student, trust them to help me make important decisions in my life about my education?”
Felix Young, on the other hand, said the punishment was justified.
“An academic institution has the right to lay down graduation requirements, and students must adhere to these guidelines,” says the 15-year-old Hong Kong International School student.