School of Law Commencement for Graduating Class of 2021

The School of Law (SLW) of City University of Hong Kong (CityU) held its Commencement at Wong Cheung Lo Hui Yuet Hall, Lau Ming Wai Academic Building on 30 May 2021 (Sunday), celebrating the accomplishments of the graduating class of 2021. Most of our graduates attended in person while some of them attended virtually.

More than 250 participants including faculty members and graduates attended the ceremony. Professor TAN Cheng-Han, SC, Dean of SLW, presided at the ceremony. Professor TAN and our graduate representatives Mr TSANG Cheuk Lok and Mr HU Taige each gave an address for our graduates. Professor Alexander LOKE, Professor of SLW, was awarded the University’s Teaching Excellence Award at the ceremony.

Professor TAN Cheng-Han, SC, Dean of SLW, first gave an address to our graduates. He congratulated all of them warmly on their wonderful achievement. He also congratulated their parents, “I know that seeing your children in their robes today brings you immense joy and pride”. He then had five pieces of advice for sharing with our graduates. First, learning does not end at university. Second, honesty, humility and integrity should always guide what you do. Third, be adaptable because things will change and this is also the reason why learning should continue beyond university. Fourth, you will make mistakes and there are times you will feel discouraged. In such times, finding the core of strength within yourself and picking yourself up are important. Finally, there is no substitute for hard work. He concluded to wish all of the graduates much happiness and fulfilment in the years ahead.

The SLW was honoured to have Professor Alexander LOKE as one of the two recipients of the University’s Teaching Excellence Award for 2020-21 academic year. Professor LIN Feng, Associate Dean of SLW, gave a brief introduction of Professor LOKE: “He places students at the centre of the knowledge building process by making them take ownership of their learning. In tutorials, each student is given the opportunity of leading the class. Mistakes and errors are seen not as causes for embarrassment, but learning opportunities. A student should leave each class feeling that he/she has learnt something more – and enjoying the process.”

Mr TSANG Cheuk Lok, the JD graduate representative, said, “the JD programme is a crucible of fire. And to many of us the journey to the end has been riddled with myriad hardships, made only more difficult by the trying circumstances that we find ourselves in. The social incidents. The pandemic. They have all taken a toll. We could not have dealt with such challenges on our own, which is why I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the faculty members, the administrative staff, and most importantly, our parents and our loved ones, for their unwavering support throughout our journey.” Finally, he shared that his time at CityU has also brought clarity to his convictions: “I want to help families that face domestic violence but lack the necessary information to access legal aid, or for some reason just fall through the cracks of the legal aid system.”

Mr HU Taige, the LLB graduate representative, shared what they learnt in the past four years. He also represented all graduates to thank their families for their endless support and the professors for their wisdom and passion. “You have motivated us to think beyond the black-letter law and to question how the law can be changed for the better. You have taught us the importance of common sense in legal reasoning, that the law is always connected with the society.” He finally reminded us that “law is not an end in itself: it is simply a means to achieve the public good.” Legal professionals will have an impact on the society and the lives of many. He added “law is never neutral. It constantly evolves and grows, and it is for us, as lawyers, academicians, and judges to guide it towards the better for our community.”

The ceremony marks the beginning of a new journey for the graduates. The SLW is confident that the graduates have what it takes to succeed and wishes them every success in the next chapter of their lives. The SLW also looks forward to keeping in touch and knowing from time to time how they are doing.