HKU Bulletin June 2011 (Vol. 12 No. 2)

Nobel Laureate Joins Outstanding Individuals at Honorary Degrees Congregation Honorary degrees are conferred on those who have made valuable intellectual, social and cultural contributions to society and the world. In March of this year, at the 184 th Congregation, the University had the pleasure of awarding honorary degrees to seven outstanding individuals, including the 'Father of Fibre Optics', Professor Sir Charles Kao Kuen, in recognition of their distinguished service and commitment to the University, to the community, and to academia. They were awarded by the University's Pro-Chancellor Dr the Honourable David K.P. Li, at Loke Yew Hall. The Honourable Mr Justice Patrick Chan Siu-oi Doctor of Laws honoris causa Mr Justice Patrick Chan Siu-oi is one of the three Permanent Judges of the Court of Final Appeal of the Hong Kong SAR. He has made important contributions to the implementation of a bilingual court system in Hong Kong and has worked tirelessly to introduce and propagate a bilingual legal system aimed at rendering the law and court proceedings understandable to both English and Chinese speakers. He has also been deeply involved in legal education, working closely with this University's Law Faculty, supporting its development and Professor Sir Charles Kao Kuen Doctor of Science honoris causa Professor Sir Charles Kao Kuen is internationally renowned as the 'Father of Fibre Optics' and a Nobel Laureate in Physics. Every time we use the Internet we should give thanks to him for making the service more readily accessible. We should be similarly grateful every time we make an international telephone call. These facilities, which we now take for granted as an indispensable part of our every-day lives, owe much to his brilliance of mind and his dedication to research. Born in Shanghai in 1933, Sir Charles went on to graduate with a degree in Electrical Engineering Professor John Leong Chi-yan Doctor of Science honoris causa Professor John Leong Chi-yan is the President of the Open University of Hong Kong, and at HKU, an Emeritus Professor and an Honorary Professor of its Departments of Orthopaedics and Traumatology, and Biochemistry. Professor Leong is one of Hong Kong's most eminent medical practitioners. He has been with the University for 38 years, during which time he has served as Director of the Faculty of Medicine's School of Postgraduate Medical Education and Training, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine, Chief of Service of the Department of Orthopaedics and Traumatology at Queen Mary Hospital, and providing opportunities for students to better understand the discipline. He has served on many HKU committees, including the University's Council from 2000-2009, and was awarded an Honorary University Fellowship in 2003. His lifetime ambition, he says, has always been to become a social worker and he has been driven through his legal career by a strong social conscience and powerful patriotic sentiment. Although social services have been deprived of a great potential servant, Mr Justice Chan has been able, through his legal work, to provide great service to the community. from the University of London in 1957, and then worked as an engineer for Standard Telephones and Cables, and its research centre, Standard Telecommunications Laboratories (STL). While working at STL, he began his pioneering work in the realization of fibre optics as a telecommunications medium. He later served as Corporate Director of Research at the International Telephone and Telegraph Corporation, and was its first Executive Scientist. From 1987-1996 he was Vice-Chancellor of the Chinese University of Hong Kong, and was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2009 and a Knighthood and the Grand Bauhinia Medal in 2010. Professor and Head of the HKU Department of Orthopaedic Surgery. When asked why he chose to remain in academia for so long, he replied that he derived great satisfaction from academic life because it allowed him to devote his attentions to complicated medical problems while continuing to conduct cutting-edge clinical research. He also enjoyed the stimulation and challenge of teaching and research in the context of his vibrant and rapidly developing medical speciality. He is a Fellow of the Royal Colleges of Surgeons of Edinburgh and England, was elected as an Academician of the Chinese Academy of Sciences in 2001, and was awarded an OBE in 1996 and a Silver Bauhinia Star in 2009. In recognition of his contributions to academia and to Hong Kong, Mr Justice Patrick Chan Siu- oi was conferred the degree of Doctor of Laws honoris causa . In recognition of his contributions to academia and Hong Kong, Professor Sir Charles Kao Kuen was conferred the degree of Doctor of Science honoris causa . In recognition of his contributions to academia and Hong Kong, Professor John Leong Chi-yan was conferred the degree of Doctor of Science honoris causa . Honours 39 The University of Hong Kong Bulletin June 2011