The University of Macau (UM) today (11 December) held the Ceremony for the Conferment of Honorary and Higher Degrees 2021. This year, more than 1,181 students from PhD degree programmes, master’s degree programmes, and postgraduate certificate/diploma programmes received graduation certificates. At the ceremony, Secretary for Social Affairs and Culture of the Macao SAR Ao Ieong U, acting as the representative of Macao SAR chief executive and UM chancellor, said that UM has continuously enhanced its academic characteristics and strengths and has achieved remarkable progress in many areas.
In her speech, Secretary Ao Ieong said: ‘The year 2021 marks the 40th anniversary of UM. In recent years, the university has played an essential role in developing higher education in Macao and actively supported the SAR government’s policy initiatives. By continuously enhancing its academic characteristics and strengths, UM has been committed to nurturing more innovative talent and socially responsible citizens with both a global mindset and international competitiveness who also love China and Macao. The university has continued to promote technological innovation and the transfer of research results to serve the local community in all aspects, and has achieved remarkable progress in many areas.’
She added: ‘Going forward, the SAR government will continue to support the university in nurturing more outstanding talent by making best use of its multicultural campus, its holistic education system with colleges and faculties, and its international mode of operation. We also hope that UM will seize opportunities, actively participate in the development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, accelerate the transfer of technological achievements, and proactively assist in Macao’s drive towards measured diversification in economic development.’
In his speech, UM Rector Yonghua Song said: ‘After four decades of development, the university now finds itself in a world characterised by profound changes and rapidly evolving technologies. With continuous adaptation and innovation, as well as a proactive attitude and investment, we will be able to respond to the new requirements for talent nurturing and technological innovation brought about by the current situation and trends.’
Rector Song also shared three of his expectations for the graduating students. First, He encouraged the students to set goals for themselves and be brave to tackle challenges: ‘I hope that you all will hold fast to your beliefs and set ambitious goals, and that you will, in a time of change, step up and deliver your best in addressing the exigencies of our time with courage and determination. This will ensure that you can make the most of your prime years and become pillars of our society.’ Second, he inspired the students to be pioneers in their fields: ‘Whatever your future careers or positions, when it comes to pursuing your ideals and ambition, you will do well to keep your feet firmly on the ground and at the same time embracing the spirit of pioneering and innovation with wisdom. I hope that you can remain energetic, dynamic, open-minded and confident, and always stand at the forefront of innovation-driven development. In this way, you will become outstanding talents who can lead trends and contribute to social progress.’ Third, he motivated the students to build resilience and perseverance: ‘Youth shines through hardships; life is elevated through hard work. I hope that you will display true grit in your future endeavours, meet challenges and difficulties courageously like a ship breaking through the wind and waves, and press forward with an indomitable will, so that you will become a strong and resilient young generation that can shoulder major responsibilities.’
In his speech, Li Chi On, representative of this year’s graduates, thanked those who did their best to keep everyone safe during the COVID-19 pandemic and expressed his gratitude towards his professors, classmates, and parents.
He also shared his motto ‘Live each day as if it were your last’ with the audience and a personal experience shortly after his arrival at UM: ‘I found myself walking on the grass rather than following the stone pavement just to get to the classroom a little earlier. A few days later, some stepping stones were placed exactly where I had walked. I found out that I had made a path. Dear Graduates, don’t be afraid when you are walking on a path “less traveled by”. We can make our own path. And now, as we leave UM to begin a new journey, I wish that all of us can find our own path to a bright future.’
This year, a total of 1,181 students from the Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Faculty of Business Administration, Faculty of Education, Faculty of Health Sciences, Faculty of Law, Faculty of Science and Technology, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute of Applied Physics and Materials Engineering, Institute of Chinese Medical Sciences, and Institute of Collaborative Innovation received their graduation certificates. Among these students, 250 are from PhD degree programmes, 878 are from master’s degree programmes, and 53 are from postgraduate certificate/diploma programmes.
Source: Communications Office