‘Turning points’ in life of Dr Agnes Chan
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Dr Agnes Chan straddles the world of entertainment and education. She is not only an opinion leader and humanitarian activist on children and women issues, but also an award-winning singer and entertainer in mainland China, Hong Kong and Japan.
Over 150 CityU students, alumni, colleagues and guests listened to her inspiring stories about her life at a session titled “My Turning Points” for a CityU Student Ambassadors Distinguished Talk on 2 February at City University of Hong Kong (CityU).
Dr Chan shared with the audience the challenges of being the fourth child in a family surrounded by siblings whom she thought to be more gifted and intelligent.
Coping with these challenges helped her to develop skills that would prepare her for a career as a singer, educator and an opinion leader.
In particular, she shared turning points that transformed her life, such as volunteering for the children of the blind and girl offenders in the correctional services.
“Don’t take anything for granted in life,” she said. “Some very simple tasks like clapping your hands is impossible for people who do not have hands. So we should be grateful for everything we have.”
Another major turning point was her decision to return to school as a full-time student while at the pinnacle of her singing career in Japan.
She first studied at the University of Tokyo in Japan, and then transferred to the University of Toronto in Canada.
Experiencing the contrasting cultures of these two countries broadened her horizons, prompting her to advise the young generation to explore the world with a “big heart”.
Her heart-felt tales about her voluntary work in impoverished parts of Africa and Asia, in particular in India, brought some of the audience to tears.
Professor Horace Ip Ho-shing, Vice-President (Student Affairs), Dr Wong Chi-tim, Director of Student Development Services, and Dr Ron Kwok Chi-wai, Dean of Students, attended the event, which was one of the signature events of the CityU Student Ambassadors Programme.
Launched in 1997, the CityU Student Ambassadors Programme sees a group of outstanding students selected every year to represent the University and serve the University community. The programme is administered by the Career and Leadership Centre under Student Development Services.