HKUST and ED Join Hands to Nurture Gifted Students

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For release 6 October 2001


The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) is launching two new programs for secondary school students, in collaboration with the Education Department (ED). The Saturday School and Mentoring Scheme programs are aimed at talented senior secondary school students with outstanding performance in mathematics or leadership.

The enhancement programs for gifted students were officially opened today (6 October) at the HKUST campus by Mr Matthew K C Cheung, Director of Education, and Prof Paul C W Chu, President of HKUST, and was attended by 165 beneficiary students from 112 secondary schools.

In terms of specialty and coverage, the programs are the first of their kind securing sponsorship from the Education Department under its Support Measures for the Exceptionally Gifted Students scheme. It is also funded by University Grants Committee’s Interface Projects 2000.

“The Government has attached great importance to the nurturing of talents. The latest initiative is seen in its allocation of an additional $10 million to design enrichment courses for gifted students,” says Mr Matthew K C Cheung, Director of Education.

“Our partnership with HKUST marks an important step towards providing a conducive learning environment for talented students to fully develop their potential. I hope students will value this new learning opportunity to study hard and broaden their knowledge base,” he says.

“Mathematics is the language of science. Students who attend the Saturday School will go beyond their school curriculum and be exposed to inspiring topics in algebra, analysis and geometry. They will study under Prof Wu-Yi Hsiang, a world renowned mathematician and educator from our Mathematics Department,” says Prof Shiu Yuen Cheng, Associate Dean of Science and Head of Mathematics at HKUST.

“Rather than simply studying for examinations, these students will gain a better appreciation of the intrinsic beauty of mathematics while improving their analytical and problem-solving skills,” he adds.

The Saturday School for Gifted Students in Mathematics will benefit 100 Form 3 to 7 students. They will attend a one-hour lecture every Saturday on the HKUST campus, to be followed by small-group tutorials. To widen their horizons, these students will also attend general knowledge talks presented by HKUST professors.

The Multi-disciplinary Mentoring Scheme will be joined by 85 students. In small groups and under the guidance of 15 mentors—HKUST professors from various disciplines—they will conduct research projects for presentation at a summer camp. These students may also attend mathematics lectures as well as general knowledge talks to broaden their educational experience.

The Saturday School for Gifted Students in Mathematics and Multi-disciplinary Mentoring Scheme is another major effort by HKUST to meet the diverse learning needs and aptitudes of gifted students. HKUST also offers online computer science and physics courses to secondary school students through a “cyber university” project.

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