Class of 2021 Graduates Celebrate Their Precious Moments at the 90th Congregation for the Conferment of Degrees

The 90th Congregation for the Conferment of Degrees of The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) was held on 4-6 November 2021.

This year’s graduation ceremonies were divided into 17 sessions and hosted by colleges and faculties. The nine colleges of CUHK conferred the Bachelor’s Degrees on 4 November, while CUHK Business School, along with the other seven faculties, held the Doctoral and Master’s Degrees Graduation Ceremonies on 5 and 6 November.

A total of 568 doctoral degrees, 6,235 master’s degrees and 5,046 bachelor’s degrees were conferred at the Congregation. Among them, there were 14 Doctor of Philosophy and Master of Philosophy, 1,112 Bachelor of Business Administration, 95 Master of Accountancy, 280 Master of Business Administration and Juris Doctor and Master of Business Administration, 82 Master of Professional Accountancy and 476 Master of Science degrees.

Cally Chan (EMBA 2007)

At the Master’s and Doctoral Degrees Graduation Ceremony on 6 November, Cally Chan (EMBA 2007), General Manager, Microsoft Hong Kong and Macau delivered a speech to all the CUHK Business School graduates as the Guest of Honour. Cally encouraged them to “enjoy every moment no matter it’s tough or not; be grateful that we have the opportunities to grow and be stronger every day.”

Berrin Birsen Oenguen (MAcc 2021)

Berrin Birsen Oenguen, a Class of 2021 graduate from the Master of Accountancy (MAcc) programme, also represented all the graduates to deliver a speech. “One thing I have learnt in my short career so far is that it pays off to be flexible and to find solutions to make things work in difficult situations. This class of graduates has had an excellent education on that.” She concluded with a quote from the famous German poet and philosopher, Friedrich von Schiller: “Those who do not dare, dare not hope”, advising her fellow classmates to be daring and be courageous for the challenges ahead.

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Here are some of the quotes from our graduates on their precious moment:

“… Time management is by far the greatest lesson learnt at CUHK. With my curiosity about various opportunities on campus, I actively participated in different extracurricular activities. Managing my time well is crucial for getting the best performance across all disciplines. Moving on from studying in CUHK to working in a financial institution, time management ability becomes more significant as I have to meet multiple deadlines in a limited time.”

– Johnny Tsun-lai Ho [Global Business Studies (GBS) 2021]

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    The GBS Programme is a fruitful and amazing 4-year journey. First and foremost, I would like to express my sincerest gratitude to Dr. Raymond Wong, our Programme Co-Director, who provided continued support and guidance. Not only did we interact closely for organising GBS events, but also communicated a lot for my personal growth and career development. With thoughtfulness and care, he is indeed a mentor, teacher and friend of mine at CUHK.

    The two exchange opportunities at the University of North Carolina and Copenhagen Business School are the highlights of the programme. Gaining international exposure, sharpening my people skills and elevating my cultural literacy are the key takeaways I cherish the most.

    Time management is by far the greatest lesson learnt at CUHK. With my curiosity about various opportunities on campus, I actively participated in different extracurricular activities. Managing my time well is crucial for getting the best performance across all disciplines. Moving on from studying in CUHK to working in a financial institution, time management ability becomes more significant as I have to meet multiple deadlines in a limited time.


“In my four-year journey at CUHK, I have met people from all walks of life. Each impacted my life in various ways and shaped me into the person I am today. But the people who influenced me the most in my undergraduate journey are definitely the professors at the School of Hotel and Tourism Management… The diverse and inclusive environment in CUHK prompted me to step out of my comfort zone. With the different societies, committees and activities all year round, it was easy and comforting to me to reach out and mingle with different people…”

– Sabrina Wong Hoi Ching (Hospitality and Real Estate 2021)

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    Is there anyone (i.e. teachers, classmates, alumni, etc.) who influenced you the most at CUHK?
    In my four-year journey at CUHK, I have met people from all walks of life. Each impacted my life in various ways and shaped me into the person I am today. But the people who influenced me the most in my undergraduate journey are definitely the professors at the School of Hotel and Tourism Management (SHTM).

    Approaching the end of Year 2, I felt like being caught between a rock and a hard place as I had to make the difficult choice between the hospitality stream and real estate stream. It was a tough call as both industries have their own lure and qualities that fit my personality and goals.

    My professors who saw me struggling offered not only valuable advice but also pure empathy and support. They gave me bountiful information to read up on and let me take control over my future instead of driving me to a certain direction. Professors with substantial experiences in both industries were more than willing to give up their free time and discuss this issue with me. Because of the clarity and honesty that I was offered, I was able to make up my mind.

    In the two years that followed after I chose the real estate stream, other challenges came such as academic difficulties and which real estate firms I should go for. Throughout all that, my professors never abandoned me and offered continued support and advice which gave me confidence and motivation to discover what I truly want and follow my dreams.

    I cannot imagine what would have happened if the professors did not offer a helping hand or if I wasn’t given the opportunity to freely connect with them. It was definitely life changing and I’m glad things turned out the way I hoped.

    What’s the most unforgettable experience in your CUHK learning journey?
    I could go on and on when asked about my memorable experiences in my CUHK learning journey, but the most unforgettable one would be the study tour that I joined in Year 1 summer. That year, SHTM has organised a study tour to Sydney with the focus on sustainability and what the hospitality industry can do in that regards.

    This trip is the definition of active learning, we did not have long lectures or courses to attend but in each destination, we explored different elements of what it means to be sustainable and gained other knowledge such as how similar or dissimilar Sydney operates their commercial properties. We also visited heritage centres that preserve and promote the importance of indigenous culture that is often overlooked when talking about sustainability. We were also extremely lucky to visit Qantas headquarters to get an exclusive look into one of the largest airlines in the world.

    During this trip, not only was I able to gain a lot of knowledge, but I also had a lot of fun with my peers from different years. Coincidentally, the study tour was made up of a group of girls and we had a lot of fun shopping and ate lots of good food. We were able to bond with each other thanks to the extremely flexible itinerary.

    What did you learn from CUHK that you think it made an impact on your career?
    My biggest takeaway from CUHK is definitely interpersonal skills. As I was in the same primary and secondary school for 12 years prior to my undergraduate studies, I was immersed in my comfort zone all the time and at first, I was extremely reluctant and even resistant to meeting new people in university.

    However, the diverse and inclusive environment in CUHK prompted me to step out of my comfort zone. With the different societies, committees and activities all year round, it was easy and comforting to me to reach out and mingle with different people.

    It was a slow and gradual change that I did not even take notice of. But now, as I stepped into the working world, I realise how important this skill is. Every minute of the day, even if you’re not facing clients, you are developing different relationships with your colleagues, peers and seniors. Without this essential skill, it is close to impossible to grow and develop one’s career.


“The well-rounded journey at CUHK has enabled me to explore my true interests and new fields. Over the past years, CUHK granted me numerous opportunities for gaining international exposure… To me, what university has taught me the most is the importance of networking. I would like to thank all the professors that have guided me along the way and helped me set my career goal.”

– Fang-yu Guu [Professional Accountancy (PACC) 2021]

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    The well-rounded journey at CUHK has enabled me to explore my true interests and new fields. Over the past years, CUHK granted me numerous opportunities for gaining international exposure, including the experience of studying at University of Oxford and taking a summer internship in Melbourne. What’s more, I was impressed by the curriculum offered by CUHK Business School. During the lectures, we were able to interact with practitioners from relevant fields as well as deal with real-life cases to keep up with the market trends. The most memorable project was the one we cooperated with Cathay Pacific to design a new marketing campaign, which was led by Prof. Tingting Fan.

    To me, what university has taught me the most is the importance of networking. I would like to thank all the professors that have guided me along the way and helped me set my career goal, in particular Mr. Eric Leung, Dr. YY Butt and Dr. Anthony Law. Besides, I have learnt a lot from my friends and classmates, who are talented, diligent and warm-hearted. The people I met, and the experience I went through at CUHK have cultivated me to become a better person.


“Looking back at my CUHK journey, Mr. Eric Leung, our programme director influenced me the most… He encouraged me to grab every opportunity and be bold for not following the norms. Seeking advice from experienced and generous mentors like him really helped me a lot in starting off my career…”

– Sharie Kong Cheuk Yi (PACC 2021)

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    Looking back at my CUHK journey, Mr. Eric Leung, our programme director influenced me the most. I participated in PACC’s admission talk in the last year of my secondary school life. At that time, I was confused and not sure which subject I should study at university. It was Eric who told us at the talk that “accounting is the cornerstone of the business world which can help you excel in various industries”. I am open to possibilities, and hence I chose PACC. During my days at CUHK, I got numerous chances to speak to and learn from him, including my participation in the accounting society and the admission process of the Global Accounting Stream, etc. He encouraged me to grab every opportunity and be bold for not following the norms. Seeking advice from experienced and generous mentors like him really helped me a lot in starting off my career.

    The most unforgettable experience at CUHK would be my tenure at the accounting society. Being an external vice president with the experience of working with 14 talented young people have pushed me to grow and learn. I tried many new things and developed various skills during my tenure, including organising a large-scale orientation camp and networking with prominent business professionals. These experiences have also trained me to become a better member of the society, and I have learnt a lot about team collaboration, working attitudes and communications skills. This is the most precious takeaway from my university life.


“Over the past year, my learning journey in CUHK was unforgettable and filled with joy. I’d like to thank Dr. Joyce Wang, Ellen Lin, Joyce Lee and all the MAcc faculty members for their meticulous care and support, giving me the feeling of home … I’m deeply thankful and blessed for meeting every faculty member and alumnus in MAcc. I hope to follow their examples, learn from them, and become an expert in the field of accounting.”

– Changmei Jin (MAcc 2021)

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    Over the past year, my learning journey in CUHK was unforgettable and filled with joy. I’d like to thank Dr. Joyce Wang, Ellen Lin, Joyce Lee and all the MAcc faculty members for their meticulous care and support, giving me the feeling of home.

    My academic advisor Dr. YY Butt must be the one who influenced me the most at CUHK. In his class, he used vivid examples to make the study of tax law no longer boring, not only leading us to explore the magical mysteries of the taxation world but also revealing the importance of tax planning for a company. It cultivated my curiosity and enthusiasm towards a career in tax. Meanwhile, Dr. Butt inspired us with his own legendary experience and personal charisma, motivating us to become successful business leaders of the future.

    Inspired by Dr. Butt, I chose to start my career in the tax department of a Big Four accounting firm. The curriculum of Dr. Butt’s elective course “International Taxation Planning and Management” is very relevant to my current job scope. For example, the course taught me about international taxation, such as OECD Model Tax Treaties and transfer pricing rules. I was excited that my learnings could be applied from the course to my work. In addition, course activities such as role play, research project and group presentation have also enhanced the general level of my tax literacy in various aspects.

    I’m deeply thankful and blessed for meeting every faculty member and alumnus in MAcc. I hope to follow their examples, learn from them, and become an expert in the field of accounting.


“…The MAcc programme taught me the importance of developing my own professional network. MAcc provided ample opportunities for its students to build relationships with alumni which I think would be very helpful for my career development.”

– Jenny Shao Zibing (MAcc 2021)

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    Our class committee president, Nira Xi (MAcc 2021) influenced me the most in my studies at CUHK. She’s a girl who is full of positive energy and is so warm-hearted to try her best to help other classmates in need. I truly enjoyed every precious moment to get along with my fellow classmates during the epidemic time, whether we took classes together in the classroom, or we had dinner in the canteen. The programme taught me the importance of developing my own professional network. MAcc provided ample opportunities for its students to build relationships with alumni which I think would be very helpful for my career development.

“… It was a bittersweet goodbye, and I must also thank those who beat the COVID blues together with us in the past year. It’s been a pleasure to learn from you all, and I do believe our paths will cross again in the future.”

– Rachael Ho [MSc in Management (MiM) 2021]

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    “Take the first step in faith. You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.” I know I’m not Martin Luther King, nor do my dreams warrant any grandiosity, but my CUHK MiM journey is for sure a leap of faith. Without strong textbook knowledge on business and management, I envisioned a tough year ahead when I started my studies at CUHK. Fortunately, I have attained much more than what I could expect in terms of self-discovery and improvement.

    There are many people I want to thank. Prof. Tina Choi and Dr. John Lai are the two in particular I want to express my gratitude. Thanks Prof. Choi for having faith in me and being such a practical mentor to me. I can’t stress to her how much I appreciate her selfless sharing of experience that has guided me in the right direction. Thanks Dr. Lai for always being with the students. It was always comforting to know that your programme director was one message away from a coffee chat. Thank you for your patience and giving me a confidence boost when I first started the MiM journey.

    The most unforgettable experience was our cohort’s BBQ party, along with the MiM Team. It was a bittersweet goodbye, and I must also thank those who beat the COVID blues together with us in the past year. It’s been a pleasure to learn from you all, and I do believe our paths will cross again in the future.


“… Every dedicated professor and talented classmate in MiM has not only taught me professional knowledge but also inspired me with life insights to forge ahead!”

– Hazel Yeung (MiM 2021)

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    Time flies. The MiM journey is one of my most rewarding life memories that is worth cherishing. Every professor I know at MiM has commendable qualities. I admire every one of them who is able to give me guidance systematically and teach students patiently and professionally. Among them, our Programme Director Dr. John Lai always taught us by precept and example, while Prof. Tina Choi adopted a unique teaching style which often delivered thought-provoking lectures to her students. Every dedicated professor and talented classmate in MiM has not only taught me professional knowledge but also inspired me with life insights to forge ahead!

“At CUHK, I learnt three important things. The first is marketing knowledge, including all the theories, analysis methods and professional skills … Second, I practised my teamwork skills in various group projects in our programme … Third, I am grateful to all the professors, who not only taught us practical knowledge, but also passed on their passion and belief in marketing to us …”

– Yaning Chen [MSc in Marketing (MScMKT) 2021]

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    Is there anyone (i.e. teachers, classmates, alumni, etc.) who influenced you the most at CUHK?
    I am deeply influenced by Prof. Howard Lam. I knew him when he was a guest speaker at CUHK-Shenzhen, and I chose MSc in Marketing at CUHK because of his strong recommendation. In my postgraduate study at CUHK, he was the lecturer of my favourite course, Marketing Research. I learnt a lot from his lectures, from product concept design to multiple research methods. What’s more, I am deeply moved by his passion and insistence in marketing, and also decide to be a successful marketer in FMCG like him. Upon graduation, I appreciated his suggestions and teaching these years.

    What’s the most unforgettable experience in your CUHK learning journey?
    The most unforgettable experience in my CUHK learning journey was a business competition that I took part in with my fellow classmates. I, along with other two classmates and a student from the University of Hong Kong, participated in the P&G CEO Challenge this year and entered the Top 30 in China Division. I still remembered the meetings that we had in Cheng Yu Tung Building, and the creative ideas we came up with. I learnt a lot from my classmates, and I enjoyed the feelings of cooperating with excellent fellows and achieving meaningful results.

    What did you learn from CUHK that you think it made an impact on your career?
    At CUHK, I learnt three important things. The first is marketing knowledge, including all the theories, analysis methods and professional skills. The content in our curriculum are quite practical and useful in my current career. Second, I practised my teamwork skills in various group projects in our programme. I got chances to cooperate with excellent fellow students from different backgrounds and learn from their brilliant ideas. Third, I am grateful to all the professors, who not only taught us practical knowledge, but also passed on their passion and belief in marketing to us. As a student who did not major in business in undergraduate, I appreciate CUHK for training and cultivating me as a more qualified and confident person to propel my marketing career.


“… CUHK has prepared me well for my future career in different aspects. I studied various industries and business lines in group projects and was clearer about my future career goals. Also, I enhanced my data analysis skills, and this filled my knowledge gap. I became more sensitive to data, and this helps me deal with tasks in my work more easily …”

– Cailing Lin (MScMKT 2021)

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    Is there anyone (i.e. teachers, classmates, alumni, etc.) who influenced you the most at CUHK?
    It’s definitely Prof. Hao Shen who influenced me the most at CUHK! He taught us the most fundamental and practical marketing knowledge in the very beginning of our programme. He encouraged and gave us the confidence to overcome difficulties that helped me achieve good results in the coming year. Prof. Shen gave me the chance to be a class representative, so that I could hone my interpersonal skills and make friends with many fellow classmates and learn from them. He also gave me many valuable recommendations about study, career and life. He is not only a good teacher, but also an excellent mentor and friend of mine!

    What’s the most unforgettable experience in your CUHK learning journey?
    The most unforgettable experience in my CUHK learning journey was a project conducted by my team in the Marketing Research course. I, along with five other classmates, completed the project and got the highest grade in class. In this project, we have learnt the method of product concept development and new product testing, which is the unique part of this course. I enjoyed the experience of doing project with my best friends and achieving remarkable results together.

    What did you learn from CUHK that you think it made an impact on your career?
    CUHK has prepared me well for my future career in different aspects. I studied various industries and business lines in group projects and was clearer about my future career goals. Also, I enhanced my data analysis skills, and this filled my knowledge gap. I became more sensitive to data, and this help me deal with tasks in my work more easily. As the class representative, I got many chances to improve my interpersonal, problem-solving and leadership skills, which are highly valued by my current leader. I really appreciate CUHK for giving me a perfect place to explore the world and think about myself.


“… Choosing to study at CUHK is not just about pursuing a master’s degree, but experiencing a different way of life. The slogan of “The Imaginist”: Imagine Other Possibilities reflects my thoughts. CUHK Business School provided us with vast opportunities and a perfect platform to see the world through a wider perspective, from which we could meet friends with diverse backgrounds, realise and improve our own shortcomings, as well as strive for better career opportunities …”

– Jony Jin [MSc in Real Estate (MScRE) 2021]

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    I am honoured to have joined CUHK as a student of MScRE. Over the past year, I not only met top-notch professors with cutting-edge industry insights, but also gained professional industry knowledge and friendships with a group of lovely and outstanding classmates.

    My year-long study in CUHK MScRE helped me identify my career direction and laid a solid foundation of professional knowledge for my future career development. The most unforgettable experience at CUHK was about taking Dr. Ervi Liusman’s course. Through Augmented Reality (AR) technology and field trips, we have deepened our understanding and application of professional knowledge. I would also like to thank Dr. Jenny Tian and Mr. Hugh Huang for their meticulous care and support during my learning journey, giving me the feeling of home.

    Choosing to study at CUHK is not just about pursuing a master’s degree, but experiencing a different way of life. The slogan of “The Imaginist”: Imagine Other Possibilities reflects my thoughts. CUHK Business School provided us with vast opportunities and a perfect platform to see the world through a wider perspective, from which we could meet friends with diverse backgrounds, realise and improve our own shortcomings, as well as strive for better career opportunities. MScRE’s professional curriculum has further stimulated my enthusiasm for the real estate industry and boosted my confidence for future career advancement in the industry.


“In my studies at CUHK, the most impressive thing was that I could learn from many outstanding teachers who have strong industry experience and are kind to offer their rigorous guidance to us. My most unforgettable experience was the course taught by Dr. Ervi Liusman, who applied Virtual Reality technology for the first time to assist the explanation of theories …”

– Alyssa Liu (MScRE 2021)

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    In my studies at CUHK, the most impressive thing was that I could learn from many outstanding teachers who have strong industry experience and are kind to offer their rigorous guidance to us. My most unforgettable experience was the course taught by Dr. Ervi Liusman, who applied Virtual Reality technology for the first time to assist the explanation of theories. I also appreciated the offline discussion about career planning with Zhaoxin Jiang, an honorary research fellow from CUHK’s Hong Kong Institute of Asia-Pacific Studies. During my CUHK learning journey, I met many humble and talented alumni who had fully utilised the learning resources of CUHK and left vivid and unforgettable memories of studying and living in Hong Kong.

    Dr. Liusman’s course was so eye-opening that students could explore potential career directions based on their interests, such as consulting, internet strategy, product manager and more. For example, I switched from a Big 5 Real Estate Consultancy Firm (CBRE, Colliers International, Cushman & Wakefield, Jones Lang LaSalle and Savills) to BAT (Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent). My most valuable takeaway from studying in Hong Kong is the prudent attitude towards work and study, the innovative business mindset, and the spirit of constantly seeking new experiences.