University of Hong Kong

Founded in 1911
5 Campuses
18,823 Students
6,293 Staff
Joined U21 in 1997

The University of Hong Kong, founded in 1911 to take over from the Hong Kong College of Medicine (established in 1887), is the oldest tertiary institution in Hong Kong. From the modest beginning of only two faculties, the University has grown to embrace almost all major areas of teaching and research.

The University currently has 10 faculties and a total student population of over 18,000, of which about 6,500 are from overseas. 58% are enrolled in undergraduate programmes, 29% in taught masters programmes and 13% in research degree programmes. They are served by a teaching staff of 1,496 of which over half are international faculty.

The University’s ethos of providing “outstanding teaching and world-class research” and its international outlook is signified by its Coat of Arms. It features two Chinese phrases from Confucius: “Illustrious Virtue” and “The investigation of things,” combined with the Latin motto “Sapientia et Virtus” meaning “wisdom and virtue.” As Hong Kong’s pre-eminent research university, the University of Hong Kong receives a large proportion of government research grants. In particular, its strength in scientific research is internationally recognised. The University’s Faculty of Medicine, for instance, consolidated its international reputation when its pioneering influenza research team identified the coronavirus that triggered the 2003 SARS epidemic.

The University’s international outreach is reflected in numerous joint initiatives, student mobility and academic programs with overseas institutions. It has more than 250 exchange partners in the world with over 1,600 students on exchange programs this year. It is a founding member of Universitas 21, an international consortium of research-led universities; its well-regarded MBA program has announced partnerships with the London Business School and Columbia Business School, giving students the opportunity to take classes in London and New York; and it hosts the world’s first World Trade Organisation (WTO) Regional Training Centre in Asia, providing cross disciplinary training for governmental officers from the region.

The University has major expansion plans as it approaches its centennial year in the form of a new Centennial Campus. Due to be completed in 2011 at the cost of over £170 million, the additional 42,000 m² state-of-the-art campus will allow the University to enhance its teaching and research facilities as well as increase its student numbers by over 3,000 in preparation for the introduction of a four-year degree structure in 2012.

Professor John Kao, Vice-President and Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Global)