SENG Co-Hosted Summer Mixer with HKSTP to Celebrate HKUST’s 30th Anniversary

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Reviving Ties and Building New Bonds

SENG Co-Hosted Summer Mixer with HKSTP to Celebrate HKUST’s 30th Anniversary

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Prof. Bertram Shi kicked off the ceremony with an opening speech.
Prof. Bertram Shi kicked off the ceremony with an opening speech. [Download Photo]

The HKUST School of Engineering (SENG) successfully co-hosted the HKUST 30th Anniversary Engineering Alumni Summer Mixer together with the Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Corporation (HKSTP) on June 17, 2022. The networking event took place at the Hong Kong Science Park and was fully supported by two HKUST-led research centers – AI Chip Center for Emerging Smart Systems (ACCESS) and Hong Kong Center for Construction Robotics (HKCRC). The event also included a guided tour to the two cutting-edge research centers.

Being the first in-person alumni event organized by SENG since the outbreak of the pandemic, the Summer Mixer attracted more than 160 engineering faculty members, alumni, students and friends, and was graced by the presence of Prof. Tim CHENG, Vice-President for Research & Development of HKUST and Center Director of ACCESS; Prof. Bertram SHI, Acting Dean of Engineering; Mr. Albert WONG, Chief Executive Officer of HKSTP; and Dr. YUAN Yixing, Senior Researcher of HKCRC.

Prof. Bertram Shi began the ceremony by expressing his heartfelt appreciation to HKSTP and all participants for supporting the event. In his welcome remarks, he highlighted SENG’s extensive alumni network. “One of the many things that the School is really proud of is the most important product of the University – our students and alumni. We have nurtured a global network of over 34,000 alumni to date after three decades of educating engineers.” He then recognized the School’s engagement in conducting societally relevant and impactful research. “One of the key changes I have observed throughout my career at HKUST is the shift in engineering research from a focus mostly on academic impact to an increasing focus on the potential impact of our work on the community and society.”

Mr. Albert Wong encouraged future HKUST engineering graduates to leverage the resources of HKSTP as an incubator for start-ups, tech ventures and R&D projects. “If you have an interest in becoming an R&D innovation technologist after you graduate, HKSTP is the place to be,” said Mr. Wong. “HKUST has the largest number of start-up companies in HKSTP. Keep this going, keep thinking about starting your own company or pursuing a career in R&D, and be part of this whole revolution in Hong Kong. You will be our biggest partner.”

Prof. Tim Cheng offered his insights into the current field of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) and introduced the research focus of ACCESS. “Improvement in AI and ML accuracy comes with an enormous cost in terms of resources and energy consumption. The goal of ACCESS is to realize ubiquitous AI application in society by improving AI chip performance and energy efficiency, and by accelerating AI chip productivity and time-to-market,” said Prof. Cheng. “ACCESS researchers have hands-on experience in building chips, and HKUST professors could bring in state-of-the-art ideas based on insights drawn from advanced research. This end-to-end innovation ecosystem from research to commercialization is what InnoHK is about, and is what ACCESS is about.”

Dr. Yuan Yixing gave a comprehensive introduction to HKCRC and quoted Center Director Prof. LI Zexiang in illustrating how HKCRC breeds the construction innovations of tomorrow. “The purpose of science and innovation education is to bring students to a place where they can hear the ‘sound of the gun’. This place is full of people who are brave enough to chase after their dreams, and it's hard for them not to do something great with each other.”

During the reception that followed, participants had a pleasant time mingling over bottles of “Breer”, our alumni’s sustainable local craft beer, and sharing their personal and business ventures. Some conversations inspired chances of collaboration that could create a direct and positive community impact. The light-hearted event successfully fostered an effective link between HKUST’s colorful past and bright future, and further opened bridges of opportunity that the University promises to build for its graduates. The School also showcased videos featuring recent faculty, student and alumni achievements, the newly opened Shaw Auditorium at Clear Water Bay and the upcoming opening of the HKUST Guangzhou campus, and revisiting some of the most memorable episodes for SENG throughout the past decades.

Take a look at this photo album which captures some of the best moments of the event. 

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