Hang Seng reaps uni status reward

Local | Amy Nip 12 Feb 2019

Admission applications to Hang Seng University jumped 50 percent after it recently acquired university status, according to president Simon Ho Shun-man.

Speaking at a spring reception, Ho said the number of applicants for 2019/20 has increased by more than 50 percent over last year.

"I believe it is related to the school's recognition at the end of last year," he said.

Formerly known as Hang Seng Management College, the Sha Tin institution became a university in October following approval by the Chief Executive in Council and Education Bureau.

With about 5,000 students, it is the city's second private university.

There are a total of 11 local universities.

As of the end of last month, the university has received more than 3,000 applications for admission for the upcoming year.

The number of admissions for the coming academic year will increase by more than 100 to 1,500.

Among the increased student admissions, half will go to mainland students, whose numbers should increase to 100 from 20.

Those from the Greater Bay Area are the most enthusiastic about enrolling at the university, Ho said.

The university is promoting itself in 17 provinces and cities in the mainland.

With five schools - business, communication, decision sciences, humanities & social science, and translation - the university's most popular program is its bachelor of business administration.

So far, there are 400 applications, 50 percent more than last year.

The university will introduce a global business program in the coming school year.

Dubbed an elite program in most universities, the university expects students to have an average score of 20 in the Diploma of Secondary Education exam.

An arts and design bachelor program will debut in the 2020/21 academic year, riding on the wave of the development of the West Kowloon Cultural District.

Starting this year, several subsidized universities will launch flexible arrangements to admit students who do not attain the minimum entry requirement.

Under the current system, students who obtain a minimum score of 3-3-2-2-2 in the DSE exam will get into university.

That includes level 3 in both Chinese and English and level 2 in two other core subjects - mathematics and liberal studies - as well as an elective.

Ho said the university will adopt the flexible admission mechanism as well, but the number of students admitted this way will not exceed 5 percent of the year's total.

The students should also provide results of international examinations, such as the International English Language Testing System or the General Certificate of Education, to prove their language ability.

However, Ho said the flexible admission mechanism should not be abused, or the DSE will lose its recognition.

Hang Seng is the first self-financing post-secondary institution to become a university since the government announced a revised roadmap of criteria for post-secondary colleges to acquire such status in 2015.

Factors considered include the breadth of programs offered, the research capability, size, governance, financial sustainability and quality assurance.

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