Chi Sun Spotlight: High Table with the Cotton Princess, Ms Marjorie Yang

Carrying on the ritual of treating its residents with a night of enlightenment coupled with splendour, Chi Sun College had its first High Table for the year 2017-2018 on 14th September 2017. Dressing up in their best attire, and donning their academic gowns, 437 Chi Sunners of 37 different nationalities partook in the night’s festivities. The grandeur of the night could be compared to a night at Hogwarts, as claimed by not only the students, but also by the distinguished speaker of the evening, Ms Marjorie Yang.

Ms Yang, the “cotton princess”, as introduced by the Master, is the Chairperson of the textile and apparel-manufacturing company, the Esquel Group. Named four times as one of the top 50 most powerful women in business by Fortune Magazine, Ms Yang, a MIT and Harvard graduate, is also the Deputy Chairperson of the Seoul International Business Advisory Council (SIBAC), and an independent non-executive director for both HSBC Hong Kong and Swire Pacific. Under her leadership, Esquel Group became not only a multi-billion-dollar franchise catering to the needs of high-end brands and retailers such as Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, Hugo Boss, Nike and Marks and Spencer, but also one of the of most sustainable and environmentally friendly manufacturing companies out there.

Sharing her own life experiences, and how she regrets missing out on going to classes and interacting more with her fellow classmates, Ms. Yang enlightened the Chi Sunners on the importance of peer-learning. She said “A lot of effort has been put to make this place your home; a place where you can make friends. Make sure you don’t do what I did. Learn from each other.” She further pointed out that, “You are here to learn about the universe. You are here to learn about how the brain works. You are here to ask foolish questions. You are here to pursue foolish pursuits. Only then, will you leave this place as a person ready to tackle change.”

Ending her speech on a high note, Ms Yang motivated the students to develop soft skills that would differ them from machines, “Currently, changes are so rapid. The skills you currently learn will be out of use in three years. So, you need to anchor yourself. Don’t forget about Artificial Intelligence. Learn about humans, because what machines can do, they are going to do. You need to find yourself skills that machines find it difficult to acquire.”

While Ms Yang’s speech inspired the residents to take charge of their student-life, Master Professor Gabriel Leung also shared some tips on how to have a fruitful year in Chi Sun. In addition to asking the residents to keep the washrooms clean, and refrain from sounding false fire alarms, he urged them to communicate with each other; “There are many good things about Hong Kong people, but showing emotions and allowing yourself to be friendly is not one of our fortes. So, let that be different.”

Raising a toast to Inspire the students to have a happy and fun filled way year, the Master marked the beginning of the rest of the evening, where students not only enjoyed a mouth-watering three course meal, but also got the privilege of interacting with the distinguished guests in the podium over coffee.

 

Maitraee Mistry, 2nd Year, Medical Engineering

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