Newsletter No. 62

Comments from Senior Administration From the Vice-Chancellor Greetings to all the readers of this newsletter, now pub l i shed every fortnight in its new format. You w i l l agree w i t h me that information is crucial to our well-being in this day and age; therefore the CUHK Newsletter serves an important purpose — t h a t of r e l a y i ng news and information to all members and friends of the University. We should tell everyone about the University — what we stand for, our efforts, our achievements, and even our problems — anything that may make a difference is worth communicating. Some in the University have said that we should show the good side of the Un i v e r s i ty together w i t h our blemishes. Wh i le I agree w i th the sentiments, I find not a few of them have presented their case in a rather destructive way. I believe we must do everything with a purpose in mi nd: in e x t o l l i ng our virtues and success, we aim at bettering ourselves through setting even higher goals; in revealing our shortcomings, we strive to find ways of changing for the better. Therefore, I am all for raising criticisms, as long as they are accompanied by suggestions for imp r ovemen t, because only constructive c r i t i c i sms generate meaningful debates. I am sure the Publication Office will continue their efforts to make the Newsletter a fine publication. The University administration will provide them with up-to-date information on the development of this dynamic university. We also urge all academic faculties, departments, research institutes, and other teaching and administrative units and students to do the same so that the Newsletter will contain news from the entire University constituencies. During the first four years of my vice-chancellorship, I spent time in USA in the summer to do research. I discovered during this past summer that I could do it equally efficiently here. In the process of conducting research on a topic related to the design of future communication networks and their dependence on future information services, I found that the academic environment at this University is most conducive to such work. Not only do we have great experts amongst our staff, whose intrinsic quality and high personal attainment impress me tremendously, I can also muster the expertise of other experts in Hong Kong and around the world through our network of contacts. It occurred to me then that we are not impeded in any way in doing forefront and top quality research on our own campus. In other areas it is pretty much the same: we have the resources and potential to excel in all aspects, specifically in teaching; it rests with ourselves how much we want to achieve and how to go about realizing our objectives. I hope members of this campus community can communicate more frequently through this newsletter to define our common goals. I look forward to speaking to you again through this column, which will be shared occasionally by other senior administrators who have other important messages to put across. My comments will be written mostly in English but when some administrators choose to write in Chinese, this column will be moved to the Chinese pages. Charles K. Kao EMINENT EDUCATIONIST ON SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT P r o f . Brian John Caldwell, professor and associate dean (research) of the Institute of Education at the University of Melbourne, gave two public lectures in Lecture Theatre 2 of the Sino Building on 8th and 12th December respectively. In the first lecture titled 'Strategic Issues in the Global Transformation of School Edu c a t i on ', Prof. Ca l dwe ll reviewed the major trends in school reforms over the world in the last decade. He explained why most such reforms have been considered not comprehensive enough, especially in areas such as learning technologies and the composition of the work force at the school level. He proposed a change in the organization image of the school, and tried to identify major issues for leaders at both the school and school system levels. He also analysed the imp l i ca t i ons for the (Continued on page 2) MANY MAY BENEFIT FROM THE NEWLY ESTABLISHED BURNS FOUNDATION B u r n victims residing in Hong Kong, Macau, and China can now apply for financial assistance to pay for part or all of the treatment costs incurred at the Prince of Wales Hospital. Thanks to a donation of HK$6 m i l l i on f r om the Or i en t al Press Charitable Fund Association, the Faculty of Med i c i ne established the Burns Foundation to help burn victims receive plastic and reconstructive surgery and rehabilitative treatment at the Prince of Wales Hospital. The financial assistance given will allow the patient to receive treatment as a semi-private (second- class) in-patient by designated senior doctors. The Foundation, administered by a board comprising officials of the University and distinguished members of the community, will also sponsor burns research and related educational pursuits. On the same note, the Department of Surgery announced the pioneering use of the surgical ultrasonic aspirator for the cleansing and debridement of a burn wound with minimal blood loss and maximum preservation of normal healthy skin. It has proved highly satisfactory in the recent treatment of five burn patients. This new surgical technique is the latest in the list of accomplishments of the division of head and neck/plastic and reconstructive surgery of the Department of Surgery. Its previous achievements include the innovative use of cultured skin in treating extensive burns in 1991 and the establishment of Hong Kong's first skin bank in 1992. It also boasts a record of successful reconstructive burns surgery for patients with cosmetic and functional deficiencies.