The percentage of non-local undergraduate students in the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) jumped from 18% last year to 20%, reaching the cap set by the Government on non-local admissions. In addition, at 55% of this year’s non-local undergraduate intake, the percentage of international students admitted to HKUST is the highest among local higher institutions.
HKUST is devoted to creating a world-class international and multicultural campus environment. In 2012, HKUST admitted 382 non-local undergraduate students, among which 203 students (55%) are from overseas and 179 students from the Mainland and Taiwan (45%). Students from Asia continue to account for the largest share of non-local undergraduate enrolment, with the majority coming from Mainland China, Korea, Indonesia and India. This year, the University has a record high number of 36 students from outside of Asia, with 29 students from 18 different countries in Europe. Joining HKUST for the very first time are students from Bulgaria, Egypt, El Salvador, Greece, Moldova and Ukraine. Up to now, HKUST has admitted international undergraduates of 64 different nationalities.
In recent years, applications from non-local undergraduate students for admission to HKUST have been on a steady rise. This year, the University received a record-breaking 2,000 applications from international students and close to 7,000 applications from Mainland students, representing 55% and 53% increases respectively from previous year. Prof Kar-Yan Tam, Associate Provost and Dean of Students said, “Asia is gaining prominence in the world economy. While high unemployment rates have hit many parts of the world, graduates in Hong Kong continue to enjoy good post-graduation prospects. A degree from Hong Kong’s top ranked universities opens doors to opportunities whether here or abroad. Increasingly, students from around the world are realizing the benefits of studying here.” He added that the worldwide recognition garnered by HKUST for its excellence in education and research has also been a strong appeal to international applicants.
International Students among the World’s Best
Top undergraduate students from around the world are attracted to study at HKUST. The average SAT Reasoning Test score at 2,087 (out of 2,400) and average IB Diploma score at 37.7 achieved by our intake means that HKUST is recruiting the top 4% and 11% respectively from around the world. Starting from the 2012/13 academic year, the Government began offering 10 targeted scholarships to non-local undergraduate students from ASEAN countries, India and Korea who are admitted to undergraduate studies in Hong Kong. Of the 10 HKSAR Government Scholarship awards available this year, five were awarded to HKUST’s international students in recognition of their academic excellence.
Carolina is the first El Salvadorian student admitted to HKUST. As the highest scoring candidate in the El Salvador national high school exit exam, she was presented with the El Salvador Mr President’s Scholarship, which allowed her to take up studies on full scholarship in any overseas university of her choosing. While most of her peers chose universities in North America or Europe, Carolina chose HKUST as she believes in the future of Asia and is impressed by the quality of education available in Hong Kong and by HKUST. On top of public examination results, the University pays heed to students who have demonstrated exceptional abilities, determination and passion in the sciences. Among the non-local students admitted to HKUST this year are medalists of the International Biology Olympiad and the International Chemistry Olympiad.
Attracting Mainland Students of the Highest Caliber
Undergraduate students entering HKUST from Mainland China continue to be of exceptional caliber. This year’s Mainland intake has achieved scores within the top 2% in the National Higher Education Entrance Examination. This year also sees the first student from Qinghai entering HKUST, whose scores in the examination rank 38th in the province. Academic accomplishments aside, the University places great emphasis on students’ ability to think independently and their overall interests. The Mainland intake is not only academically strong, but has also demonstrated all-roundedness, as only those who performed well at the admission interview were offered admission.
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