--> Openlink Vol 23 Issue 1 (March 2014)<!--Passion generates quality work<br>Parting words of President John Leong--> | Hong Kong Metropolitan University
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  •  Openlink Vol 23 Issue 1 (March 2014)
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    Passion generates quality work Parting words of President John Leong
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    Four distinguished individuals awarded honorary Doctoral Degreesvideo

    Passion generates quality work
    Parting words of President John Leong

    Vice President Prof. Leung Chun-ming
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    Passion generates quality work
    Parting words of President John Leong

    President Prof. John C Y Leong, retiring at the end of March, received his ten-year Long Service Award from Council Chairman Dr Eddy C Fong at the Closing-of-the-Lunar-Year Luncheon held on 21 January. In his address, Prof. Leong thanked his colleagues for their support and encouragement over the years, saying ‘This will be my last time to attend this event in my capacity as President. I am very grateful to all of you for the support that you have given the University as well as myself during the past decade. Over the last 25 years, we have all worked together, making unrelenting efforts to build this self-financing institution into a unique and successful university. As our Pro Chancellor and Council Chairman have just said, the OUHK has reached new heights. Furthermore, I believe, in accordance with my personal motto “Passion generates quality work”, that we can make everything become possible and reach even greater heights soon.’

    Transforming the OUHK to a multi-mode education university

    Taking off his doctor’s robe and leaving the University of Hong Kong, where he had worked for 38 years, Prof. Leong became the fourth President of the OUHK in 2003. At that time, the OUHK was facing a significant decline in the number of distance learning students. With faith and passion, Prof. Leong resolved to transform the OUHK into a multi-mode education university and was eventually able not only to reverse the difficult situation, but even to flourish, by launching full-time, e-learning and blended learning programmes and courses one after another.

    Over the past ten years, the number of full-time students at the OUHK has grown exponentially from 250 to 7,000. While our distance learning programmes continue to grow steadily, with a stable student population of 12,000, we have also admitted an increasing number of e-learning and blended learning students. Prof. Leong has described the current situation as the most healthy and balanced development of the University. ‘If I am asked what is my most satisfying accomplishment during my ten years with the OUHK, I would say, without a doubt, that it is my success in transforming the OUHK into a genuine multi-mode university.’

    Expanding the campus to enrich university life

    Prof. Leong has been planning ahead to expand campus ever since he first saw that the university facilities were becoming inadequate to meet the rising number of students. In spite of the notorious difficulty of getting even an inch of land in Hong Kong, under Prof. Leong’s leadership the OUHK was able to erect both the 12-storey Campus Phase II and the Jubilee College within a single decade. During that time, the OUHK also opened a new learning centre in Kwai Hing to triple the available physical space for LiPACE. These ambitious campus expansions enable us to offer our students an ideal learning environment and a rich university life.

    Encouraging students to care about the community

    For a university, nothing is more important than the quality of her students. When students leave their alma mater to venture into the world of work, their performance in society is the mark of the University. Prof. Leong said, ‘The quality education that our students receive at the OUHK gives them a strong foundation to face future challenges. When they enter their working lives following graduation, they should be able to play a positive role in society, be outreaching and be expressive of their own views. In short, they should always act with the community in mind.’

    Reminiscing on fond memories at the OUHK

    Though his ten years and four months’ service is about to end, Prof. Leong said that he will always consider himself a member of the OUHK family. Addressing the last Congregation during his tenure on 9 December 2013, he gave words of encouragement to our new graduates and shared his great affection for the OUHK. ‘Not everyone goes through life having enjoyed their career. Even fewer people will derive great satisfaction from two different careers. I have been most fortunate to have experienced that in the Medical Faculty of the University of Hong Kong and the Open University of Hong Kong. As I leave the OUHK to take up my new role as Chairman of the Hospital Authority, I will reminisce with great joy about my ten years with you.’

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