16 March 1999

University holds event for Hong Kong graduates

Australia's 1998-99 University of the Year, the University of Queensland, will hold a convocation event at the Hotel Furama, Connaught Road, Hong Kong on Tuesday March 23 at 7.30pm to acknowledge the achievements of new graduates in the presence of alumni, family and friends.

A total of 23 recent graduates will be presented to University Chancellor Sir Llewellyn Edwards at the convocation ceremony for 132 guests.

Hong Kong alumni association president Linda Lee will speak at the ceremony.

Sir Llewellyn, University Vice-Chancellor and President Professor John Hay, and University Secretary and Registar Douglas Porter will also speak at the event, which will be followed by a cocktail reception.

In 1996 alumni associations were formed in Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong to represent the interests of graduates and help them maintain contact with the University. Almost 450 graduates are listed on the University's convocation roll for Hong Kong. This year 126 students from Hong Kong are studying at the University of Queensland and the University has seen a 57 percent increase in new enrolments from Hong Kong.

The University is currently preparing a draft agreement with the University of Hong Kong on a graduate employment exchange program. It is a member of Universitas 21, an elite grouping of universities limited to 20 members world wide, who are committed to quality enhancement through international benchmarking. Members of Universitas 21 include the National University of Singapore, University of Hong Kong, Peking University and Fudan University.

Sir Llewellyn said assemblies of alumni, or convocations, were as important to the University of Queensland as they were to its graduates. The University conducted such ceremonies to introduce new graduates to those who had preceded them, in the company of their families and friends.

Sir Llewellyn said the University had many international students during the past 50 years, but in recent years, had witnessed a remarkable growth in the diversity of its student body, particularly in offering places to scholars from the great centres of Asia such as Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong.

"Knowledge and scholarship are not restricted by national boundaries and we see ourselves as an international institution, very much enhanced by the interaction of staff and students of different cultures," he said.

"This ceremony also signifies the University's willingness to participate positively within the Asian region. We hope that our graduates will take an active role in the University's regional activities and maintain contact with their fellow students.

"Participation in the University's graduate networks enables graduates to develop personal and business friendships and provides opportunities to continue their association with the institution which has played such a vital role in their education."

For further information contact:Ms Melinda Seymour, University Protocol Officer, care of the Hotel Furama, Connaught Road, Hong Kong - telephone 2525 5111 (Monday March 22 to Wednesday, March 24).

Convocation ceremony for Singapore graduates Convocation ceremony for Malaysian graduates