Student ambassadors get set for "diplomacy"

Veronica Leung

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Twenty-one newly-appointed student ambassadors vowed to live up to the core beliefs and ideals of the Student Ambassador Programme after their inauguration ceremony on 17 February. These ideals involve “learning through serving” and “whole-person development”.

The Programme underlines CityU’s commitment to offering its students the opportunity to develop into fully-rounded citizens through student-centred activities and serving.

“The Student Ambassador Programme is a key student development activity in our University into which we inject a lot of resources,” said Professor Lilian Vrijmoed, Dean of Student Learning, in her welcoming speech at the ceremony, which was held in the City Top Restaurant.

The 21 ambassadors are drawn from different academic disciplines and were selected from 185 applicants through a vigorous screening process.

“The new ambassadors have set a very positive agenda for their personal development, striving to become ideal CityU graduates,” Professor Vrijmoed added. “We are delighted to see they have a positive attitude, good communication skills and great common sense.”

The ambassadors will receive training in leadership, problem-solving, communication and interpersonal skills.

The year-long Programme, also known as “A” Project, was launched in 1997 by the Student Leadership and Development Team from Student Development Services (SDS). The aim is to promote CityU and community relationships and to cultivate friendships and support.

Student ambassador Connie Mo, a Year 2 student in the Department of Chinese, Translation and Linguistics, said the Programme was a great chance for her to gain more exposure to CityU and the community-at-large.

“Fostering a sense of belonging is one of the goals of my tenure,” she said.

Another new ambassador, Kevin Hui, a Year 2 student in the Department of Building and Construction, said when he was in his freshman week, he was impressed by the student ambassadors’ “Thank You Week” which encourages the University community to show its appreciation for others.

“SA enhances our sense of belonging, which is why I joined up. As an ambassador, I have to devote plenty of time and effort to our activities, but I’m sure I will gain a lot in return,” he said.

The Programme is sponsored by the Quality Campus Life Fund and supported by Professor Vrijmoed and Mr Joseph Chan, Director of Student Development Services (SDS), and several SDS counsellors.

Previous SA members are an important source of advice and support. Former ambassador James Chen, a Year 3 student in the Department of Electronic Engineering and an ambassador in 2004-05, shared his experience with the new appointees at the ceremony over the weekend.

“Whatever difficulties you encounter, don’t let yourselves down,” he said.

In spring, the ambassadors will organize the “CityU Thank You Week” plus meetings with community leaders. In summer, they plan an annual interflow tour to Malaysia and Singapore to consolidate their learning experience.

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