Newsletter No. 378

2 No. 378, 19.5.2011 青 年慈善家郑承峰先生是中大校友,他慷慨捐助港 币一千万元,供中大发展「通识教育基础课程」。 为答谢郑先生的厚爱和支持,中大特将通识教育研究中心 命名为「郑承峰通识教育研究中心」,并在3月25日揭幕。 经济余裕的商人,本着取诸社会、用诸社会的理念捐助大 学建大楼、设奖学金或教授席很常见,但捐款专门推动通 识教育,则大抵是出于另类独特信念的驱使。郑先生解释: 「从近日很多天灾人祸中,立时见到的是人文教育与人文 质素在面对逆境时所彰显的力量;专才固然重要,但社会 只有专才其实不够理想,专才同时要有通才的视野,才能 全面发挥个人能力。通识教育是一把百合钥匙,可以打开 各种知识的宝库。」因此他慨捐巨款加以推动。 郑先生本人就是一位通才。他曾就读圣神修院、罗马传信 大学,2007年取得中大哲学文学硕士学位。念哲学的时 候,很多人告诉他念这科目是找不到工作的,他的回答是: 「哲学是一种为『人』而念的学问,以『人』为目的,而非以 『人』作工具作手段。」他还提到自己从「社会大学」所受 的教育,就是对社会文化、新闻、时代转变、政制的了解及 关注,再加上时刻评估自我价值,问一下:「自己可以做什 么」,从而自我鞭策,力求长进和提升。 现在他有自己的生意,哲学也引领他去思考「人」的需要, 所以在检讨生意的成果时,除了以利润为指标外,也会考 虑产品和服务是否为用家的生活带来方便进步。 除了发展自己的事业外,郑先生也担任多项公职,有传媒 甚至冠以「公职王」称号。对此他说:「如果『王』是指多 的话,不一定是好事,反之,对公益的热心、对公益有良心, 才是重要。」他自言小时候家境不好,缴不出学校书簿费, 幸得善心人帮助才解了燃眉之急。后来家庭经济改善,现 在行有余力,就希望做点事情回馈社会。 郑氏家族捐助中大已非首次,郑承峰先生的父亲郑应炎先 生及兄长郑承隆博士早于2005年就成立「郑承隆通识教 育及哲学研究基金」,资助中大的哲学及文化发展,推动 通识教育研究及促进各地通识教育的交流。沈祖尧校长 对郑氏家族的支持深表感激,他表示:「郑氏家族的慷慨 捐款是对中大人文传统及通识教育传统的肯定。」 对于时下青年人的交流普遍缺乏语言质素,不能也不愿 意讨论人与人生等深层的问题,郑承峰先生有点慨叹。不 过,在他印象中,曾修读中大通识基础课程的学生总能流 露出自信,活学活用,也懂得感恩,把握机会。他希望他们 日后多发挥自己,多认识社会,多感受不同的文化,多为 「人」做事或关心有益于「人文」的事。他说:「如果人生 活在世,时时想着以人为本的话,不仅对于自己的事业,对 于社会和世界都会有一定贡献。」 M r. Baldwin Cheng, an alumnus of CUHK, has made a generous donation of HK$10 million in support of the development of the University’s General Education Foundation Programme. To commemorate Cheng’s contribution, the Research Centre for General Education in CUHK is now renamed the Baldwin Cheng Research Centre for General Education and the opening ceremony of it was held on 25 March. It is not uncommon for rich entrepreneurs to make donations to universities for building teaching complexes, setting up scholarships or professorships. But for a donation earmarked for the promotion of general education, there must be some conviction behind it. Mr. Cheng explained, ‘From the recent natural disasters, we’ve witnessed the power of humanity and the value of humanities education in the face of adversity. Specialized knowledge can be put to good use only when it is married with general knowledge. Without general knowledge, specialists won’t be able to unleash their full potential. General education is a master key that can open many treasure chests of knowledge.’ This is the reason he earmarked his donation for the promotion of general education. Mr. Cheng is a generalist himself. Before gaining his MA in Philosophy from CUHK in 2007, he had been educated at the Holy Spirit Seminary and the Pontifical Urbaniana University in Rome. When studying at CUHK, he was told by many that philosophy would not help him land a plum job. His reply was: ‘We study philosophy to understand the nature of human existence, instead of using it as an instrument for success.’ He also mentioned the education he had received from society. That refers to the knowledge and curiosity about culture, social affairs, changing times, and politics. Also important is the consistent evaluation of your own value by asking yourself: ‘What can I do?’ This is the driving force of growth. NowMr. Cheng has his own business. With his philosophy training, he always has the needs of humans in mind. So, besides profits, the yardstick he uses to measure the success of his products or services is whether they will make their users’ life better. In addition to his own career, Mr. Cheng is engaged in public service in a number of areas. He was dubbed the ‘king of public service’ by the media. In response to this title, he said, ‘If “king” means a large number, it’s nothing laudable. I believe what really matters is that you have to put your heart and soul to it.’ He said that when he was young, there were times when his family was not doing well financially and was unable to pay his school fees. Fortunately, with the help of some good Samaritans they rode out the difficult times and his family’s financial situation improved later. Now that he is financially competent, he wants to do something to give back. The Cheng family has been a staunch supporter of the University. Under the patronage of Mr. Baldwin Cheng’s father, Mr. Cheng Ying-yim, and his brother, Dr. Edwin Cheng, a research fund on general education and philosophy research was established in 2005 to support CUHK’s philosophy and cultural development. CUHK Vice-Chancellor Prof. Joseph J.Y. Sung expressed his gratitude to Mr. Cheng and his family. He said, ‘The generous donation from the Cheng family is an affirmation of CUHK’s humanistic and general education tradition.’ Mr. Cheng is worried about many young people’s lack of conversation skills. They are unable and unwilling to enter into discussions on deep issues of life. But it is his impression that the students who have completed the General Education Foundation Programme are more confident, resourceful, thankful, and able to seize opportunities. He hopes that they will exploit their potential to the full, know more about society, explore different cultures, make more contributions to humanity, and care about humanities related issues. He said, ‘If a person lives his or her life with a sense of common humanity, he or she will be able to make contributions to society and the world.’ 为学生打 一把百合 钥匙 ─ 校友捐款推动 通识教育 Handing Students the Master Key: Alumnus Donation to Support General Education

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