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Something to Tell Me?

Do you have something to tell me? I have created this corner to listen to your suggestions, collect your opinions, and share the good and bad times in your studies and personal life. Please feel free to drop me a few words anytime.

Dean of Students

With your consent, we may post your message (extract / summary) on this page.  We will first contact you through e-mail. 



您好, 自從上次與校長中午小聚後, 我一直忙於考試論文, 所以很抱歉沒有儘快給您回復郵件。 下面, 我談談我在文字學方面的一些經歷。

我目前在讀對外漢語的研究生, 我的畢業論文打算寫 <傳統漢字教材對對外漢字教學的啟示> (<文字蒙求>與對外基礎漢字教學); 我明年畢業後打算到英國去讀博士, 擬定方向為傳統漢字教材對對外漢字教學的啟示。

我以前一直希望成為一名中文教師, 曾經也讀過很多經典, 但是總是覺得自己沒有入門。 直到後來, 我讀到章太炎先生的文章時, 才恍然大悟, 原來我一開始就走錯了。 21歲那年, 我決心放棄其餘高深的文章, 開始一心攻讀文字學。 承蒙恩師流沙河先生不棄, 以78歲高齡於家中客廳, 每周給我義務地單獨講授文字學, 並把他的手稿影印給我。 這就是我那一年的教材, 並且我配合抄了 <說文解字>。 這也是我為什麼那麼想要學習文字學的原因, 我遇到了一個少有的好老師。

到了香港以後, 我去見過中文大學一名文字學教授, 他提到我的求學經歷注定了系統性和科學性不夠(因為我的文字學是私塾背景), 給我提供了很多建議。

目前,遇到的困難是我自學了很多內容, 但不知道有問題時應該找我們學校的哪位教授請教。 還有我很想去旁聽專門文字學的這一門課, 但是我們學校好像沒有。 確實, 自學需要付出很多, 而且文字學這們學問要坐很多年的冷板凳, 我希望自己的內心能夠變得足夠的強大去克服環境和內心的各種變化。

無論如何, 我也感激老師您對我善意的幫助, 也提前祝福您以及您的家人聖誕節快樂! Thank you!



[Summary of Student Xu's message:
Student Xu, a postgraduate student of the programme "Teaching of Chinese Language as a Foreign Language", wrote to Prof. Mak to share her experience of her studies.  Xu plans to further her studies in the United Kingdom after graduating from PolyU next year.  Her research will focus on how the traditional teaching materials could inspire the teaching of Chinese language as a foreign language.
Xu has spent a year before studying in PolyU to learn lexicology from a Chinese lexicology master.  The teaching materials were copies of the master's manuscript.  Xu gathered that her goal to study lexicology was exactly her luck in meeting a good teacher.
Though her academic background with a private teacher and the topic of the research could have paved challenges for her further studies, Xu hopes that she would have courage to overcome the hurdles ahead.]

Dear Student Xu,
Thanks for your email.  Hope that you have done well with all your final examinations and term papers, and more importantly you have found your first semester at PolyU intellectually stimulating and fulfilling. 
I can tell you are a very conscientious student. Your readiness to reflect on your learning needs is exemplary. Systematic and scientific understanding builds in time and upon attitudes and experiences like yours, and there are many ways to achieve that. You are fortunate to have learned one-to-one from a master in your area.
You have grasped an important attribute of a dedicated academics, namely tenacity.  Do not let your past lacks dwarf you. You can build on your past, rather than let your past limit you.
I know less than nothing about lexicology, but still somewhat understand the challenges you mentioned.  What you are working on may not be glamorous nor trendy. Those things come and go.  Someday, your peers would be able to appreciate the underpinning contribution of your lexicology work to the teaching of Chinese as a foreign language.
Wishing you a Merry and Meaningful Christmas.
15 December 2010


Dear Professor MAK,

To my educated guess, this corner is for full-time student. However, I trust that it does NOT matter whether we are full-time or part-time sudents so long as we just would like to share our innermost feelings and experience with you.

Inevitably, I am an utmost advocate of POLYU and POLYU is my most favourite university amongst all other universities in Hong Kong. To be candid, I just would like to share with you that I have already studied in POLYU for 13 years and Year 2010 is my 14th year studying in my prestigious lovely POLYU!

I have commenced my POLYU study in 1997. My study focuses on MANAGEMENT and ENGLISH LANGUAGES.

Well, I have firstly attained my Diploma in Services Managemnt (General) in POLYU-SPEED. Then, I have successfully attained my LONG-ASPIRING BACHELOR DEGREE IN BUSINESS MANAGEMENT in POLYU-SPEED in collaboration with THE UK NORTHUMBRIA UNIVERSITY. Subsequently, I have successfully entered into the Postgraduate Studies in ENGLISH FOR THE PROFESSIONS IN THE DEPARTMENT OF ENGLISH IN POLYU -->MY LOVELY POLYU indeed, and now I have already completed my Postgraduate Diploma in English For The Professions in POLYU and I will attend my lovely POLYU's 16th University Graduation Congregation in around October 2010 at the earliest so you may just understand how glorious I am to HAVE ATTAINED MY TERTIARY EDUCATION AWARDS IN POLYU FOR 3 times!!

On 6 March 2010, I will commence my MANAGEMENT COURSE (Customer Services Management) organized by the Institute of Enterprises of POLYU and the lectures are scheduled in Saturday afternoons so I can enjoy my favourite MANAGEMENT COURSE again!

Finally, thank you for sparing your precious corner for me to share my HAPPIEST MOMENT IN MY LOVELY POLYU!

I wish you good health and good career advancement!

You are most welcome to post my message on this page.

Yours sincerely


Dear Yuen Ling,
Wow!  Congratulations!  I can feel your happiness in your studies in PolyU and your excitement in attending your next course in PolyU tomorrow!
Thank you for your good words and trust in PolyU's education.  We welcome all our students to write through the "Tell the Dean" page.  Do write to me again to share your thoughts.
I wish you good health and fruitful experience with your new course. 
5 Mar 2010

PS.  Thank you for allowing us to post your message on the "Tell the Dean" page.


Dear Mr Mak,

Hello! I am a third-year student and this is my first time to write something here.

Being a member of the Rowing Team, I just want to say I love PolyU so much. I love being a representative of PolyU and to compete with other universities. I enjoy every moment studying in this university. This year I must be very busy since I have to do my FYP.

I missed the chance to apply for the exchange program last year. I regret it every moment. All my 'exchanged' friends told me that they were having so much fun during the program. I am just wondering if I can still apply for it in my final year?

Anyway, I just want to share my happiness of being a POLYU student. HAHA!

Best wishes,


Dear RK,
Thanks for writing to me.  I am happy to know that you love your time in PolyU and is an enthusiastic sportsman.
Concerning the exchange programme, you may wish to know that the chance for a final year student is rather limited.  Checking from the International Affairs Office (IAO), we are advised that exchange programme is not eligible for final year students.  As from the Chinese Mainland Affairs Office (CMAO), the next round  of application for Semester 2 (2009/10) is now opened, and the deadline is the end of September.  However, our CMAO colleague reminded that you will have to be especially careful as you need to make sure that you can gain enough credits for your graduation.  If you really wish to make an application, you are advised to first check with your home department.  You may like to contact the Programme Officer or consult your Programme Leader (details have been sent to you in a separate email).  Like you have mentioned, you need to consider your Final Year Project as well.
Wish you all the best in your final year at PolyU.

14 Sept 2009


Dear Dean,

Hey, first of all, this page is cool!! ^^

Anyway, I would like to suggest PolyU to provide financial assistance for non-local students. I wanted to grasp this opportunity to propose this idea to you on behalf of our non-local students. To be honest, I face financial stress pretty much in studying in HK.

I really hope, really really hope that my proposal will be taken into considerations. Maybe my result is not good enough for this, but I think there are non-local students out there who deserve this.

I wasn't told to do this but I understand the feelings of studies with worries and I hope this proposal could free them from their nightmare. I hope this little voice of mine caught your attention.

Thank you for your time reading my lengthy tiny thought.

Last but not least, it's really sincere for you to create this corner for us to listen to our voices. Thank you very much and I respect you so much for this.

GAN Yi Ming

Dear Yi Ming,
Thanks for writing to me and hope your first year at PolyU was happy and fruitful. Thanks also for your suggestion and I appreciate your thoughtfulness for other needy non-local students.
You may be aware that the Student Affairs Office (SAO) administers a number of scholarships, bursaries and interest-free loans. The funds are made available by the generous donations of private organizations and individuals, but most of them are stipulated for local students only. Currently we do not have funding (both government and private) to extend the financial assistance to non-local students. We will, however, try to look into this area and see if things can be improved.
9 Sept 2009


Dear Prof. Mak

Thanks for your email to us all and your kind care about us current students.

I am a mainland final year student. Really enjoyed the past three years here in PolyU and learnt much. Hope we can keep in touch and share with each other our most memorable experience.

Take care~

Account and Finance

Dear CD,
Thanks for writing to me.  I am happy to know that you love your studies and stay in PolyU.  I am sure you will especially treasure your last year of study here.  Do you have any plan after your graduation?

9 Sept 2009

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