2,968 Degrees Awarded at the 49th Congregation T h e University's 49th Congregation for the conferment of higher and first degrees took place on yet another Thursday this year. On the morning of 7th December, 2,968 degrees were awarded by Sir Yuet-keung Kan, pro- chancellor of the University, at the University Mall. This is a record high n umb e r since t he Un i v e r s i t y 's establishment. As in last year, postgraduates crossed the stage to receive their degrees f r om the p r o - c h a n c e l l or i n d i v i d u a l l y, whe r eas first-degree graduates received their degrees en bloc, by degree, under the stage. The ceremony lasted for an hour. This year a new band was invited to provide music: the Tung Wah Group of Hospitals Wong Fut Nam College Symphonic Band, who recently w o n in the Hong Kong Schools Music Festival and who has had ample experience playing music for congregations of other local universities. In previous years, either the Police Band (not available this year) or the Military Band ( n o w d i s b a n d e d) was asked to provide music for the congregation. I n the afternoon the four constituent colleges and the Part- time Degree Programmes organized c e r emo n i es f or t he ir r e s pe c t i ve graduates at d i f f e r ent venues on campus. O The first Executive MBAs Number of Higher Degrees Awarded MD 4 Ph.D. 36 M.Phil. 234 MA 22 M.Div. 7 MFA 2 M.Mus. 3 MBA 123 M.Ed. 44 M.Sc. 4 MSW 6 Total 485 Number of First Degrees Awarded 1995 1966─95 BA 424 7,191 BBA 435 5,921 B.Ed. 72 258 B.Eng. 195 821 MB Ch.B. 134 945 B.Med.Sc. 4 28 B.Nurs. 68 186 B.Pharm. 31 31 B.Sc. 530 7,249 B.S.Sc. 590 8,532 Total 2,483 31,162 Extract from the Vice-Chancellor's Address 'Auniversity education must do far more than impart professional knowledge and develop the intellect. It must also nurture prudent and discerning citizens. Just as I believe you will leave this campus capable of shaping your world successfully through your knowledge and your analytical skills, I trust too that you will be able to bring harmony to your world through your aspirations for social justice and righteousness. I respect those who speak out against injustice, I also defend those who assert their right to the freedom of speech, whether on this campus or in the wider world. We must however be conscious that our freedom to speak and to act can all too easily trespass on the rights and dignity of others, or even stray beyond the confines of the law. Reason and restraint, then, are the two weapons that I commend to you today. If you use themwisely, and shoulder the responsibility for your words and your actions, you will indeed command real respect and support from the community.' Many 'Firsts' Among this year's graduates we have · the first two graduates from the Master of Fine Arts programme; · the first 34 graduates from the Executive MBA programme; · the first batch of 31 home-grown pharmacy graduates from the B.Pharm. programme; · the first 56 undergraduates who were able to complete their studies at the end of the first term as a result of the implementation of the flexible credit unit system.