Word of Advice for Newbies / 學長的話

(按此看中文版)

“Life is tough and tiring, but you learn and grow from your experiences –
and you find happiness within yourself.”

I remember the first time I stepped into the HSBC Prosperity Hall when I was a freshman. The warm greetings from the hallmates overwhelmed me with love. After joining a variety of hall activities, such as the orientation camp, Chinese New Year gathering, high table dinner, carnival and etc., I started to grow interest in joining the Residents’ Association (RA). In the following year, I was extremely lucky – not only that I have become one of the members of the executive committee, but I also got a group of good teammates. We organized numerous events and activities, and those I can say, gave me a huge sense of accomplishment.

Some people would say that joining the committee is tough, and that you won’t be able to handle your academic work and many other things. But the truth is, being a committee member is like living your life. Life is tough and tiring, but you learn and grow from your experiences – and you find happiness within yourself. After joining the committee, my Cantonese improved tremendously; I learned how to communicate and connect with local people; to cooperate with people; better time management; and most importantly, to think in other’s point of view. Since you always have to organize events mostly for local Hong Kong people, you have to understand their likes and dislikes in order to make the activities more enjoyable for them – and from that, you can truly experience and learn the local culture.

In regards to the saying about the drop in your academic achievements – it was just a saying. There are people who can balance both their committee and school work, and even get into the dean’s list. Even if you don’t join any committee, it doesn’t guarantee your grades will be better – it is up to you, your personality and your will. For me, being an RA urges me to have better time management, and this benefited me a lot in whatever work I do.

In this coming year, I have the chance to see things from a new point of view — as a Residence Tutor (RT). I believe that not only I can learn more from handling more hall activities, but also to be able to spread the hall culture that I love a lot.

For the incoming residents, here is a humble list of suggestions for you. If you ever find yourself clueless about studying and living in Hong Kong, here are five suggestions that may help you enjoy your stay here.

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1. Take initiatives, and open up to strangers

Do not worry about the language barrier! If you want to truly understand and enjoy the local culture here, take the courage and try to speak to both local and foreign students. Always take initiatives and be positive. People will accept you the way you are.

2. Be objective and open about cultural differences and seek for common grounds

We all grew up in a different environment, with different educational and social background and social. It is normal if you find yourself alienated from the local culture and in the interactions with others. However, if you spot a discrepancy or find yourself situated in a conflict, be calm, do not fight or do anything that could worsen the situation.

3. Find a way to express yourself

Sometimes, challenges in life or stress is inevitable, especially when you are a newbie. However, don’t let that negative vibe and energy overwhelm you. Find and learn the right way for you to express your emotions and frustrations. You can always talk to a friend, or go for a jog. If necessary, you may even seek help or advice from counselling services available at school.

4. Experience with your heart

Hong Kong has a very unique and interesting culture. The best way for you to experience it is to be passionate about learning it. Always spare some time to participate in hall activities, and chat with your roommate, floormates and hallmates.

5. Think responsibly, rationally and sensibly

No matter what adversities you are situated in, do not get too overwhelmed with your emotions into doing something extreme. Learn to think responsibly and do things rationally and sensibly. If necessary, your friends, your Residence Tutor, Residence Master and SRO will be there for you.

Writer:   Caesar TANG (HSBC Prosperity Hall)
Translator:   Michelle CHIANG (Hall 10)
Images:   Caesar TANG (HSBC Prosperity Hall)

~~~

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“有壓力才會有動力,不上莊,你或許也不會用那些事情去學習或幹其他有意義的事,而上莊會促使你更好的安排自己的時間,讓自己有一個特別充實的大學生活。”

在我大一剛進滙豐業昕堂的時候,舍堂裡宿生會成員的熱情問候就讓我深深地感受到了這座舍堂的溫暖。之後的各種活動,包括迎新營,盆菜宴,高桌晚宴,嘉年華等活動更是讓我對上莊產生了濃厚的興趣,希望能通過這樣來更深入的融入到舍堂文化。於是大二的我成功地上了莊,成爲宿生會的一員,結交了一班特別好的莊員,組辦了舍堂里大大小小的活動,成就感油然而生。也許有人會說,上莊會很苦很累,會忙得顧不上其他的事。我要說的是,做什麼事情都會苦都會累,但是上莊會讓你在苦累中得到快樂,收穫很多。你的廣東話會突飛猛漲,你會懂得如何更好地與人交流,如何更好的團隊合作,如何更好的管理安排自己的時間,懂得去換位思考,你甚至會了解到 不同國家地區的風俗,因為你要面對的是整座舍堂所有的人,他們在活動中怎樣才能更加享受會讓你去更加了解它們。至於有人說上莊會忙得顧不上學習,我想說,上莊後成績進步甚至爆四的人也並不是沒有。有壓力才會有動力,不上莊,你或許也不會用那些事情去學習或幹其他有意義的事,而上莊會促使你更好的安排自己的時間,讓自己有一個特別充實的大學生活,而這些,我認為,對我將來的事業或工作也是確有裨益的。

接下來的一年,我覺得自己有責任讓更多的人有機會感受到這些,因此我會擔任舍堂導師來盡力創造機會,我相信站在另一個不同的角度上,它會讓我感受更多,收穫更多。

對於初來乍到的學弟妹們來說,香港求學的生活有時可能會你們覺得沒有頭緒,抑或是不知所措。所以,作為一個過來人,我想以自己的親身經歷向大家說下面五點建議,希望能夠幫助大家更好的融入香港的生活。

#1 大膽交流,主動融入

不要擔心語言不同可能溝通有障礙的問題,大膽的去找本地的學生或者國際生去交流,去真正的了解這裡的生活和文化,自己積極主觀地去嘗試融入在城大的學習與舍堂生活。

#2 客觀對待文化差異,求同存異

因為從小的成長環境,教育背景甚至整個社會的體系製度不同,你可能在與本地生或者國際生交流的過程中,發現一些文化的差異甚至是衝突,這個時候你需要冷靜客觀地去對待,而不是強行發生衝突。

#3 自我宣洩,學會釋放

生活中,難免會有一些不如意的事情發生,對於新來港的你們可能壓力更大。但是不要讓這樣的消極的情緒累積下去,學會及時地釋放這些情趣,比如和朋友聊天談心,或者適當運動。必要時,可能還需要去向學生展處的輔導員(心理諮詢師)尋求幫助。

#4 親身體會,切身經歷

香港有其獨特的文化風俗,最好的接觸方式就是切身投入其中。你應該盡量,與層友及樓友常溝通交流、增進感情,積極參加舍堂裡的各項活動,又或是加入宿生會深入全面地了解整個香港的舍堂文化。

#5 獨立思考,理性處事。

無論面對什麼樣的事情,都不要意氣用事,甚至產生極端的想法,要冷靜下來,學會獨自思考,理性處理,必要時求助於朋友,舍堂導師(Residence Tutor, RT),或是舍監(Residence Master , RM) 和學生宿舍處(SRO)。

文:唐四海(滙豐業昕堂)
圖:唐四海(滙豐業昕堂)

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