President’s Newsletter for Alumni
December 2020


Dear Alumni,

I sincerely wish you are all well and healthy during this trying time as COVID-19 cases surge in our community and beyond. At PolyU, we have continued with our efforts to educate and innovate, and I am pleased to bring you some good news about your alma mater in this issue of Together@PolyU.

PolyU has played a key role in the Nation’s first lunar sample return mission, Chang’e 5. Our researchers have developed and manufactured the “Surface Sampling and Packing System”, which is one of the critical components in collecting samples from the Moon surface. Recently, it successfully collected and packaged rock and soil samples from the lunar surface, bringing back lunar regolith to the Earth for the first time since the 1970s. Being the only tertiary institution in Hong Kong to contribute to this historic mission, PolyU has demonstrated its considerable research competence in pushing forward the frontiers of technology and science.

In addition to research and innovations, we continue to strive for excellence in teaching and learning, and our efforts have been globally recognised. I am pleased to share with you the news that PolyU is ranked 25th in the newly released QS Asia University Rankings 2021.

We have continued to place emphasis on students’ growth and development, and in the last issue of the newsletter, I announced that PolyU had launched a new University-wide mentorship programme “INSPIRE”, and I am now pleased to give you an update. The Programme has received support from more than 100 mentors, including recipients of the PolyU Outstanding Alumni Award, alumni leaders in various fields, University Fellows, Council and Court Members, friends and supporters. We have also received a lot of applications to join the Programme from students, both undergraduate and postgraduate, local and non-local, from all faculties and schools, and more than 240 mentees have been matched. To the alumni who have taken up the role of mentors, I wish to extend my most sincere thanks.

I look forward to a closer connection with you in the future. To share with you the latest development of the University, and exchange views and suggestions, I will be hosting the “President’s Dialogue with Alumni”, and you are cordially invited to enrol a session to be held on 29 December or 30 December. With your support, I have confidence that PolyU will fare even better in 2021 and the years beyond.

Christmas is coming, and I sincerely wish you good health and happiness, and a New Year full of joy, love, peace and prosperity.

Jin-Guang Teng



From left: Prof. Wing-tak Wong,
Prof. Kwok-yin Wong and Prof. Daniel Shek


New Members in Central Management Team

The University has announced the following appointments to central management positions: Professor Wing-tak Wong has assumed his new role as the Deputy President and Provost, Professor Kwok-yin Wong as Vice President (Education), while Professor Daniel T. L. Shek has been appointed Interim Vice President (Research and Innovation). With their breadth of knowledge and wealth of experience, they will make invaluable contributions to PolyU in its pursuit of excellence in education and research.



PolyU Technologies Help Bring Rocks and Soils from the Moon

PolyU-made space instruments recently completed lunar sampling for Chang’e 5, the Nation’s first lunar sample return mission. Tasked with collecting and returning two kilogrammes of lunar regolith samples, Chang’e 5 touched down the Moon on 1 December, carrying the “Surface Sampling and Packing System” which was developed by PolyU in collaboration with the China Academy of Space Technology.

The highly sophisticated system was designed, developed and manufactured by a team led by Professor Yung Kai-leung, Associate Head of PolyU’s Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering and Sir Sze-yuen Chung Professor in Precision Engineering, with Dr Robert W. M. Tam of the Industrial Centre being one of the key members.

This PolyU-developed system is one of the most critical components of the Chang’e 5 probe, which has brought back to Earth rock and soil samples from the Moon, helping scientists understand the evolution of the Moon.


From right: Prof. Yung Kai-leung and
Dr Robert Tam




PolyU Donation Matching Scheme

To further encourage academic and research units to make concerted efforts to solicit community support for the development of the University, we have set up a PolyU Donation Matching Scheme (“the Scheme”) for providing matching funds to external private donations. The Scheme comprises two phases. A central matching fund of $50 million has been earmarked for the first two-year phase, from 1 December 2020 to 31 December 2022. Matching priority will be on a first-come-first-served basis. Under the Scheme, newly raised external private donations in cash from non-government/ non-public sectors will be eligible for matching on an internal-external matching basis of $1:$2.

The central matching funds allocated to the eligible units shall be used for activities within the ambit of recurrent grants provided by the University Grants Committee and for specific long-term schemes such as scholarships. It is hoped that through the Scheme, the units will be able to secure additional funding support to enrich their research and education capability. Alumni who would like to know more about the Scheme or are interested in making a donation can contact the Alumni Affairs and Development Office.



Campus Development

The University has received the approval of LegCo’s Finance Committee for two funding proposals.

Campus Expansion at Ho Man Tin Slope

The campus expansion project at Ho Man Tin Slope will provide over 10,000 square metres in net floor area of academic space and more than 1,200 hostel places. The project involves the construction of an 11-storey academic and administration building for furthering healthcare education in rehabilitation sciences and optometry, in order to meet the increasing demand for health professionals in Hong Kong. It also includes the provision of a hostel building. The project is planned to be completed in 2026.


Artist impression
Library Extension and Revitalisation

The library extension and revitalisation project involves mainly the construction of an additional floor providing over 2,000 square metres of space, and revitalisation of the existing floors of the library building. Upon completion of the project by 2023, the library will be transformed into a modern learning hub with new space for collaborative learning, quiet study, a presentation forum, information technology workstation areas and other facilities.


Artist impression
Student Hostel at Tat Hong Avenue, Kowloon Tong

Separately, the Government has earmarked a site at Kowloon Tong for hostel development. The project will provide 1,680 hostel places plus supporting amenities including communal, social and dining facilities, as well as outdoor recreational space. The project is targeted for completion by 2028.


Artist impression




Rediscover Your Alma Mater

PolyU is our home. A place where we build friendships, explore new opportunities and make meaningful impact.

I encourage all alumni to explore our website and follow our social media to keep abreast of the latest news and happenings of the University, join our activities to expand your horizons and network, and be key players to volunteer and give back to your alma mater. Your participation and contributions will help us transform people’s lives and make an impact in the world.

You are welcome to come back and visit the Alumni Atrium, with its versatile facilities for holding reunions, exhibitions and even weddings. We look forward to seeing you on campus when the pandemic has abated. In the meantime, stay healthy.



A Dedication to the 85th Anniversary of PolyU: “History of PolyU”

The first predecessor of PolyU, the Government Trade School, was established in 1937. Therefore, we will be celebrating our 85th anniversary in 2022. Tentatively, we plan to focus our commemorative activities on uncovering stories of PolyU’s history and on re-connecting with our alumni.

On the first theme, we have recently launched a project led by Professor Chu Hung-lam, Chair Professor of Chinese Culture at PolyU, to write a rigorous, systematic and scholarly history of PolyU, covering important events and people who have contributed significantly to its development. During the process, we expect that many objects of historic value will be collected from the PolyU community and beyond. We hope to develop an exhibition of these objects, to be housed in the library.

On the second theme, our primary aim is for the University to get re-connected with as many as possible of the more than 400,000 PolyU alumni and to welcome them back on campus one way or another. Our large alumni population is one of the unique strengths of PolyU and is testament to the University’s huge contribution to Hong Kong society.

I appeal to all alumni for your support for the meaningful initiatives, and I would be most pleased to hear from you if you have suggestions for our 85th anniversary activities.