President's Address at the 30th University Congregation

Chairs and Members of the Council and Court, Members of the Class of 2022, Distinguished guests, Parents, Colleagues, Friends, Ladies and gentlemen,
Welcome to HKUST’s 30 Congregation!  Thank you for joining us on this special day as we celebrate the outstanding achievements of the Class of 2022. Whether you are attending this ceremony at the Shaw Auditorium in person, or virtually from elsewhere, please join me in congratulating our graduates on their well-deserved success, particularly in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Let’s also not forget the many faculty, staff, and family members who have worked tirelessly to keep our students’ studies on track during these past two incredibly tough years.
I am greatly honored to be celebrating our graduating class in my new capacity as president. Having been part of the HKUST family since 1993, it has been a pleasure to watch timid teenagers blossom into confident, mature and well-spoken young adults through their journey at HKUST — the result of their own perseverance and diligence and the dedication of their teachers and mentors.
And I take this opportunity to extend my heartfelt thanks to all of our academic staff for their continued efforts, both in and out of the classroom, in educating and inspiring our students, and nurturing them to become forward-thinking future leaders.
Members of the Class of 2022, in a few moments, you will leave this campus, the place you have called home for the past few years. As you turn the page to the next chapter of your life, I hope you will continue to cherish and uphold the core values of HKUST, continue to do your best to strive for excellence, uphold integrity, and maintain a global and diverse vision, with respect for all. I also hope you will carry HKUST’s spirit of innovation with you, wherever you go, to touch lives in all corners of society.
Possibly there are some among you who are thrilled to leave your days of study behind. Graduating today does not mean your learning stops here. You may soon experience the challenges of the real world, such as global economic uncertainties, and a competitive job market. You are also the generation that will need to tackle the daunting issues of the 21st century.
As you navigate through these uncharted waters, be brave and step outside your comfort zone. Keep an open mind and embrace new experiences in this fast-changing complex world.
I trust that your time at HKUST has equipped you with the knowledge, skills, ingenuity, and a “can-do” attitude to transform adversities into achievements, and I am confident that you will each find creative and effective ways to turn challenges into opportunities. If hurdles stand in your way, work hard to overcome them and keep going. Your resilience is the engine that will propel you forward.
Whether you are starting a career or pursuing further studies, you will likely encounter different opportunities, leading to crossroads of indecision. In such times, remember that you can never go wrong when pursuing your interests. Doing something you love will give you fulfillment and the strength and perseverance you need to reach your goals. Your passion will also inspire and empower those around you to excel in life.
And for those of you aspiring to become future leaders, let me share with you some advice – integrity, empathy, humility, and passion are the key elements to making positive impacts on the world and the lives of others.
In closing, wherever life takes you beyond this point, remember we are always One-HKUST! Rest assured that the doors of your alma mater will always remain open to you. Please keep in touch with each other, and with us, to share your experiences and insights, or even to explore future collaborations. I can’t wait to hear about the many exciting places your HKUST degree will take you in the ensuing years.
On behalf of the entire HKUST community, congratulations Class of 2022!

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