Inaugural anthem embodies CityU’s mission and values

Monday Ng

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President Way Kuo together with the senior management, staff and students participated in the premiere of the CityU anthem.

“Seeking knowledge relentlessly, pushing teaching, learning, and research beyond boundaries ….”

These lines, as voiced in our inaugural anthem, encapsulate the character, vision, and aspirations of City University of Hong Kong (CityU).

The anthem, themed with “Beyond Boundaries”, encourages students, faculty, and staff to pursue excellence, keep our mission firmly in mind, develop cutting-edge curriculum and research, promote well-being in Hong Kong and globally, and ensure that the University is “leading the world”. The anthem sings our special features, expectations, and encouragement.

“Cultural diversity”, as stressed in the lyrics, is integral to fruitful teaching, learning and research. Despite often embracing different views, we respect one another while pooling ideas to sharpen the mind and plough fresh pastures for unexplored knowledge.

Beyond Boundaries lyric block
The anthem, themed “Beyond Boundaries”, captures CityU’s special features, expectations, and encouragement.

The lyrics, which were written by President Way Kuo, were rendered more significant by the inspirational score composed by Mr Joe Lei. Together, the anthem conveys the University’s belief in “integrating teaching and research” and at the same time outlines core ideas embedded in the University’s Strategic Plan.

An effective anthem should appeal to refined and popular tastes alike, and be thought-provoking. Also, it should stand the test of time and, more importantly, highlight what’s unique about us. President Kuo said he hoped the anthem would bring students, faculty, and staff together for a fresh pursuit of their individual goals. 

Believing that “the past informs the present”, President Kuo has enriched the lyrics with ancient Chinese wisdom. For example, “in harmony, not conformity” is a maxim found in The Analects of Confucius, while “lofty mountains and vast seas” comes from the title of The Classic of Mountains and Seas.

Because of the pandemic, the people of Hong Kong have fared rather badly over the past year. Now that the Chinese New Year is upon us, the University hopes that our newly born anthem will inspire everyone for the weeks, months, and years ahead. As for our students, we urge them to take stock and do their best to excel and realise their dreams.

The anthem will be played at university events and functions as a way to promote a sense of unity of purpose, enhance our institutional identity, and spotlight our mission and values.

The 14 members of the working group set up in mid-2020 for developing the anthem come from management, faculty, staff, alumni, and students, and includes the conductor and members of the Choir and Chinese Orchestra of the University.

To help launch the anthem, members of the campus community took part in the production of a promotional music video. Personnel from management, faculty, staff, and alumni groups, among others, were involved. Students from Norway, Croatia, and Indonesia along with those from mainland China and Hong Kong also took part, adding to the theme of “cultural diversity in harmony, not conformity” as established for the anthem.

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