Home About HKMU President’s Message Speeches

The 32nd Congregation

Address by Professor Paul LAM Kwan-sing, President

12 July 2023


Dean Prof. Amy Lee, Colleagues and Students, Ladies and Gentlemen.

A warm welcome to our students, parents and colleagues on this memorable occasion.

Today, we've gathered to congratulate our HKMU students for successfully completing their university programmes in the School of Education and Languages.

To our graduates, as you begin the next chapter of your life, I would like to share some thoughts with you.

Today, the world is moving much faster than ever before. Your generation will have to work with not only your fellow human beings, but also with Artificial Intelligence (AI).

I have to admit when I first encountered ChatGPT, I considered the use of this Generative Artificial Intelligence (GAI) tools in, say, coursework assignments, to be an act of plagiarism, so my focus then was on “effective detection” and “appropriate or even severe penalties”.

As the issue unfolded, I discovered that it is very complex and the challenges immense.

Importantly, I realize that we have to move with the times, and I'm convinced that we have to embrace this “intellectual revolution”, arising from recent developments in AI.

By way of an example, this year, our University was awarded government funding. We got $73 million out of a total of $120 million. We got about 60% of the total funding. That money was for us to develop two new Bachelor's degree programmes:

The Bachelor of Science with Honours in Construction Management and Quantity Surveying, and The Bachelor of Arts with Honours in New Music and Interactive Entertainment.

I requested my academic colleagues to develop these new programmes, including curriculum design, teaching approaches and assessment methods, with the expectation that our students will be fully immersed in an AI environment.

We also set up special funds to help modernise all existing programmes so that they will be ready for, and compatible with, the latest developments in AI-assisted learning and teaching.

In reality, we can expect our students to have access to and use ChatGPT, Chatbot and other similar tools in the same way that we use calculators in examinations today.

Clearly, the work environment will be very different 10, and even five years from now, or after you have completed another qualification at HKMU or another university.

In the future, we will have to work with machines or human-like machines, and many of the jobs we have today will disappear! So let us get prepared!!!

Before we get to the stage where a graduation speech like this is delivered by an AI-generated President, I would like to share with you a story of a real person. It is a story of a recent graduate of HKMU.

Did any of you watch the bun-scrambling competition about a month ago? One of the contestants was Janet Kung Tsz-shan. She won her first Queen of the Bun title in the last competition before Covid, when she was still a nursing student at HKMU. She is a multi-talented athlete and is especially skilled in climbing sports.

After graduation, she worked as a nurse for two years. The experience of witnessing patients with Covid spending their final hours in the ICU prompted her to reflect on life and death. One question she kept asking herself is that, 'what can I do now so that I would not have regrets in my old age?'

Towards the end of last year, she decided to take on a major challenge: quitting her full-time job to embark on a 6,000-metre snowy mountain-climbing expedition in Nepal. Subsequently, she competed in the UIAA Ice Climbing World Cup as Hong Kong's only representative, touring five countries and achieving a world ranking of 16th in the women's speed competition.

One of her dreams is to start an ice-climbing school in Hong Kong to promote the sport and train the next generation of athletes.

The key word is “dream”. Do you have dreams?

If you do have a dream, have you done anything about it?

If you do not have a dream now, consider finding one.

In closing, I would like to congratulate all the students graduating from the School of Education and Languages today.

I wish to thank your parents and family members, who have given you such a high level of support over so many years, and express my deep respect for your teachers, who have guided you so skilfully towards this day.

I wish you every success in the future, and I hope to see you again very soon.