Newsletter No. 539

08 # 5 3 9 | 0 4 . 0 6 . 2 0 1 9 Photo by ISO memorable one being the DMZ (Demilitarized Zone) International Peace Marathon in Korea. Any goals you want to achieve during your term of office? While studying hard, most students are not curious enough and they seldom reflect upon their learning goals. Though information is everywhere, it’s rare for students to show initiative in arriving at a thorough understanding, and as a result, their knowledge remains deplorably superficial. Heightening students’ curiosity and hence pushing them out of the cocoon of passive and sedentary learning is a challenge I would like to take. Do you take cues from the relationship with your daughter while interacting with students? When my daughter was small, I read her a bedtime story every night. I am an introvert who warms up to people slowly. She can elicit my emotional side and we are like friends. I hope my students will not see me as an aloof and distant master, but a friend they can chat with casually. What is your favourite spot in this home on the hill? The Oasis. There were nights when I was partaking in students’ mini-concerts, where they leisurely sang and played instruments as they improvised along the way. Under the tender light, I rested on the bean bag, listening to the flowing melodies and gazing far into the light spots winking on the opposite shore of Ma On Shan. It was mesmerizing and relaxing. S. Lo It has been almost a year since you became the Master of S.H. Ho College. What are the joys and pains? No pains. But because College activities are always taking place, my schedule is less stable and there are times I have to deal with emergencies during the holidays. As for joys, I am happy for the chance to get to know undergraduates across different academic disciplines. I attend communal dinners at least twice a week, and also see students during evening activities. It is a drastically different experience from my time at the Graduate School, when I was mainly responsible for institutional planning and supervising graduate students. My wife used to take care of household matters, but now she also takes part in College activities and helps organize the 10 tea gatherings with students throughout the year. Young people long to be away from home, yet S.H. Ho makes ‘home’ its core value. Isn’t it counterintuitive? What we wish to bring out when we say ‘home’ is not paternalism, but a cosy, congenial environment where people respect and talk openly to each other like a family. We are trying to avoid top-down management. Students are part of this family— they enjoy rights and are bound to shoulder group responsibilities. More so, I hope our College can be a shelter in their learning journey. Here, they can find the spiritual support and replenishment they need. What are the ways to get students out of their rooms to participate in group activities? Only carrots, no sticks. There has been a small group of students who are lukewarm with event attendance, and we are trying to find out why. Heavy course loads can be one reason, but we don’t believe it’s the full story. Almost unfailingly, student-initiated activities are more popular, which is natural. Students are putting them forth because they feel interested; of course they are going to ace that. Can you name some landmark events? We hope to cultivate students’ curiosity, empathy and indomitable spirit in the face of hardships. The students in our Medical Society once proposed to perform health checks for foreign domestic helpers in Hong Kong. Though the costs were exorbitant, the campaign was tremendously meaningful. Our Runner Force, founded in 2012 and joined by 30 to 40 teachers and students, has members jog together and run in international competitions. The drills instil self-discipline, stamina and comradery among the runners. The College also offers full support for students to join international contests, a particularly 出任善衡書院院長快一個學年了,苦樂如何? 苦絕對說不上,只是書院活動頻繁,用的時間多了,作息日程不像從前固定, 遇上突發事件即使是假日也須處理。樂的是多了在課餘接觸和了解不同學 系的本科生。每星期我起碼出席兩晚共膳,晚上活動也會見到他們,跟之 前在研究院主責行政規劃和領導研究生是迥然不同的體驗。太太本主力持 家,現在也參與書院活動,並協助籌備每年約十次的茶聚,招呼學生。 年輕人嚮往離家的自由,書院以「家」為核心理念,會否產生矛盾? 說到「家」,我們強調的不是家長式的管束,而是一個互相尊重、像一家人 般可以開誠溝通的和諧環境。事事由院方主導並非我們所願。學生是家的 一分子,享其權利,也盡其義務,共同承擔責任。我更希望書院成為他們 學習途上的避風港。只要回到書院,便可得到精神上的支援和補給。 如何吸引學生走出房間投入群體活動? 只可誘導,不能強迫。我們一直致力了解一小部分學生對活動不感興趣的 原因,課業負荷重可能是其中之一,但相信不是全部。學生主動發起的活 動定會較受歡迎,這是不變的道理。他們感興趣才會提出,且會認同,更會 做得好。 可以舉一些具代表性的活動嗎? 我們希望藉活動培養學生的好奇心、同理心和不畏難的堅毅精神。例如醫 科生自發組織的善衡書院醫學會曾建議為居港外傭做身體檢查,並推廣 衞生,費用不菲,但意義重大。2012年成立的善衡跑隊,恆常參與的有三 四十位師生。結伴練跑、參賽,既鍛煉自律和毅力,還可培養同儕的互勉 互勵。書院曾支持學生參加國際賽事,以到南北韓三八線參加國際和平馬 拉松最為特別。 任內有何想達成的目標? 我們的學生大都用心學習課程內容,可惜對事物好奇不足,也很少思考學 習目標。雖然今時今日資訊手到拿來,但他們往往欠缺深究的主動,而只停 留在表層的認知。如何藉書院經驗誘發學生的好奇心,驅動他們脫離被動 或靜態的學習模式,是很大的挑戰。 跟學生相處可有借鏡父女關係? 女兒小時候我每晚都會為她讀故事。我性格較為內歛慢熱,她能誘發我感 性的一面,我們相處像朋友般。希望學生也不會視我為高高在上的院長, 而是能和他們輕鬆交流的朋友。 最喜愛這家的哪個角落? 「綠洲」。有數個晚上,我在那房間欣賞學生的小型音樂會,唱歌奏樂,隨 意即興。在柔和燈光下,靠着豆子沙發,聽着音樂,遠眺對岸馬鞍山的點點 燈光,煞是輕鬆愜意。 ’ 院長一職幾近全天候待命,黃永成教授 甘之如飴,在這個山上的家做個 不一樣的家長。 The Master of S.H. Ho College takes joy in being an atypical dad 24/7 in his hillside abode he calls home. ‘ 黃永成教授 Prof. Wong Wing-shing 善衡書院院長 Master of S.H. Ho College 口 談 實 錄 / V iva V oce