PolyU's Fifteenth Congregation Salutes 9,700 Graduates

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The Hong Kong Polytechnic University has sent forth about 9,700 students and conferred honorary doctorates upon five prominent figures at its 15th Congregation.

Leader of the Year Award (Education)

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) has sent forth about 9,700 students at its 15th Congregation held on the university campus.

The Congregation was presided over by Mr Victor Lo, Chairman of PolyU Council, and Prof. Timothy W. Tong on 17 October 2009. This year PolyU has awarded altogether 107 Doctor of Philosophy, 21 discipline-based Doctor's degree, 45 Master of Philosophy, 3,536 Master's degree, 4,520 Bachelor's degree, 104 postgraduate diploma and certificate and 1,360 sub-degree awards.

During the Congregation, PolyU also conferred honorary doctorates upon five prominent figures in recognition of their distinguished accomplishments and contributions. The honorary degree recipients are Mrs Rita Fan Hsu Lai-tai, former President of the Legislative Council; Dr Stefano Marzano, CEO and Chief Creative Director of Philips Design; Professor Robert A. Mundell, Nobel Laureate in Economics; Professor Poon Chung-kwong, President Emeritus of PolyU; and Dr Samuel Yin Yen-liang, CEO of Ruentex Group, Taiwan.

Mrs Rita Fan Hsu Lai-tai

A notable and highly-respected figure in the Hong Kong community, Mrs Rita Fan Hsu Lai-tai is currently Standing Committee Member of the Eleventh National People's Congress of the People's Republic of China. She is active in serving Hong Kong in many aspects, with education and politics being particularly close to her heart. Mrs Fan's political career started in 1983 when she was appointed as a Member of the Legislative Council and later in 1989 as an appointed member of the Executive Council. During the transitional period (1993-1997), she made a significant contribution to the smooth transition of Hong Kong by serving on the Preliminary Working Committee and the Preparatory Committee for the Hong Kong SAR. In 1997, she was elected as the President of the Provisional Legislative Council, becoming the first woman to win this key post. She held the Presidency of the Legislative Council for three terms until 2008. In recognition of her long and distinguished public service, she was awarded the Grand Bauhinia Medal by the SAR Government in 2007. She is conferred the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Social Science.

Dr Stefano Marzano

Dr Stefano Marzano has been Chief Executive Officer and Chief Creative Director of Philips Design since 1991. His commitment to the design industry is reflected in the many professional positions he has held in institutions in the field. He currently chairs the Advisory Board of the Faculty of Industrial Design at the Technical University in Eindhoven (the Netherlands); and is on the Advisory Councils of the Design Management Institute (Boston, USA) and Design London (which unifies the Royal College of Art, the Imperial College London and the Imperial's Tanaka Business School). Most recently, he received an Honorary Doctorate from La Sapienza University of Rome. Over the years, Dr Marzano has been at the forefront of the design profession. In 2001, he was awarded the World Technology Award for Design by the World Technology Network; and in 2005, he was named by Business Week as one of the four global "Best Leaders of 2005" for Innovation. He is conferred the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Design.

Professor Robert Mundell

Robert Mundell has been Professor of Economics at Columbia University since 1974 and was honoured with the title of University Professor in 2001. The author of numerous works and articles on economic theory of international economics, he prepared one of the first plans for common currency in Europe and is known as the "Father of euro". He has formulated a standard international macroeconomics model and has pioneered the theory of the monetary and fiscal policy mix, of inflations and interest, and the monetary approach to the balance of payments. In addition to teaching, Prof. Mundell has been an adviser to a number of international agencies and organizations including the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the European Commission, and several governments in Latin America, Europe and Canada. Prof. Mundell's tremendous contributions to scholarship in economics have earned him many awards and honours, most notably, the Nobel Prize in Economics in 1999. He was awarded for his works on optimum currency areas and the development of the international macroeconomic model. He is conferred the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Business Administration.

Professor Poon Chung-kwong

Professor Poon Chung-kwong, currently President Emeritus of PolyU, was retired from the Presidency of the Institution after 18 years of distinguished service. Former Professor of Chemistry and Dean of the Faculty of Science at The University of Hong Kong, Prof. Under his able leadership, PolyU has developed into a leading university in terms of professional education and application-oriented research. Over the years, he has served on numerous committees of the Government and of the industrial, business and educational sectors. In recognition of his sterling contribution to Hong Kong, particularly in the higher education sector, Prof. Poon was honoured as one of the "Ten Outstanding Young Persons in Hong Kong" in 1979; was appointed a Non-official Justice of the Peace in 1989; received the OBE award in 1991, the Gold Bauhinia Star award in 2002 and the "Leader of the Year Award (Education)" in 2008. To recognize his tremendous contributions to the advancement of education and promotion of Chinese culture, Prof. Poon is conferred the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Humanities.

Dr Samuel Yin Yen-liang

Dr Samuel Yin Yen-liang is a successful entrepreneur and an active philanthropist. He is currently Chief Executive Officer of the Taiwan-based conglomerate Ruentex Group. In 2008, he was elected Member of the International Academy of Engineering (Russia). He is the President of Taiwan Concrete Institute and Member of American Society of Civil engineers and a research fellow of Chinese Institute of Civil & Hydraulic Engineering. He also holds a number of academic positions, including Professorships at Guanghua School of Management of the Peking University and the Department of Civil Engineering, National Taiwan University. Dr Yin is widely known as an enthusiastic supporter to education. His philanthropic contributions began in 1989, when he founded the Guanghua Education Foundation to grant scholarships to graduate students in top mainland universities. Dr Yin is also the author of more than 300 patents and numerous articles and has been recognized internationally for his outstanding accomplishments and contributions. He is conferred the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Engineering.

Please visit http://www.polyu.edu.hk/cpa/polyu/hotnews/details_e.php?year=2009&news_id=1703 for details.

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