Encouraging Results for CUHK Science in Renowned and Competitive Joseph Needham PhD Fellowship and Merit Scholarship Programmes

The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK)’s Faculty of Science participated in the renowned and competitive Joseph Needham PhD Fellowship and Merit Scholarship Programmes supported by the Joseph Needham Foundation for Science & Civilisation (JNFSC) for its first time and received encouraging results.

Mr. Jack KWOK, a fresh graduate from the Department of Physics, has been selected for the 2022 Joseph Needham PhD Fellowship Tenable at the University of Cambridge. Jack is the first student to be awarded this PhD Fellowship after its re-launch. He will study for a doctorate in Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics at the University of Cambridge starting in autumn 2022.

The Darwin College at the University of Cambridge welcomes outstanding STEM talents from Hong Kong like Jack to join its community. Professor SONG Chunshan, Dean of Science, expressed his gratitude to JNFSC, “We are honoured to receive JNFSC’s invitation to participate in this renowned and competitive programme. I am gratified to see Jack being awarded the Joseph Needham PhD Fellowship to study towards a PhD at Cambridge and carry on the legacy of the late Dr. Joseph Needham. His pioneering spirit will continue to inspire our students.” Dr. Peter L. LEE, Chairman of the JNFSC, said, “The Board of JNFSC is incredibly proud to support the second Joseph Needham PhD Fellowship at Cambridge after almost 30 years. We are absolutely confident that Jack will deliver not only scholarly excellence, but will be an integral part of the future Needham Scholar community, embracing humility and empathy, as well as fulfilling Joseph Needham’s dream of a world class centre of excellence in Hong Kong.”

And we have more good news to deliver. Mr. Jeremy WONG and Mr. LAU King Heng, both from the Earth System Science Programme, joined the 2022 Joseph Needham Merit Scholarship through the Faculty of Science and received the award. Their academic achievements and the demonstration of empathy and humanity have brought them to the community of Needham Scholars. Jeremy will pursue Oceanography in the University of California San Diego and King Heng will study Physics at Imperial College London.

Press Releases:

Student Sharing

Jack KWOK (Physics) - 2022 Joseph Needham PhD Fellowship Tenable at the University of Cambridge

Jack hopes to make contributions to the frontiers of fundamental physics. As a CUHK Physics undergraduate, he worked closely with leading scholars in Caltech and Cambridge on different aspects of gravitational-wave astrophysics under the department’s Summer Undergraduate Research Exchange Program (SURE), and currently leads an investigation within the LIGO scientific collaboration. Jack finds himself heavily indebted to Professor Tjonnie LI, “My accomplishments today are only possible with the trust and opportunities Tjonnie offered.”

Jack recalls a pleasant surprise, two years after he sought mentorship from Professor Kenneth YOUNG as a freshman, as he realised the theoretical physicist’s style has stayed with him. “My ability to break a complicated project down into small, self-contained problems, and confront them one after another, most certainly came from Professor Young,” Jack said, “This realisation makes me really happy.”

LAU King Heng (Earth System Science) – 2022 Joseph Needham Merit Scholarship Award

I am most grateful for the 2022 Joseph Needham Merit Scholarship. It not only provides me with crucial support for my postgraduate studies, but also grants me the honour of becoming part of the Needham Scholars community.

As I continue to conduct atmospheric science research in graduate school, the Scholarship will remind me about promoting science, humanity, and intellectualism to carry on the legacy of the late Dr. Joseph Needham. I hope that my postgraduate research in tropical cyclones will contribute to the safeguarding of society in Hong Kong and beyond in the face of climate change.

Jeremy WONG (Earth System Science) – 2022 Joseph Needham Merit Scholarship Award

I am very grateful and honored for the 2022 Joseph Needham Merit Scholarship. It is a great recognition and support for my performance and pursuit of science at the Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics, Scripps Institute of Oceanography of the University of California San Diego.

I graduated from the Earth System Science Programme and have always had an interest in Geophysics. I study earthquake source physics, particularly how large earthquakes such as the 2011 Tohoku Earthquake ruptured in the complex faulting environment at the plate boundaries. By utilising high-performance computers and mathematical inversion, I hope that I can develop a new integrated approach to image past earthquakes and resolve future earthquakes.

Science Faculty All-Staff Meeting 2022

The Science Faculty All-Staff Meeting was held on 9 June 2022 to promote communication within the Faculty. Followed by a warm welcome to all new staff, Professor SONG Chunshan gave an overview of the recent developments of the Faculty. He also invited the Associate and Assistant Deans to present progress on each of the Faculty’s seven strategic areas.

The Dean thanked all staff members for all their efforts in teaching, research, and service over the past year. He also expressed his gratitude to members who have served the Faculty for years and wishes the retiring staff a joyful new journey.

(Video in Cantonese)

Online Lecture on “Food Security and Bio-Energy” – Professor LAM Hon Ming

Professor LAM Hon Ming, Choh-Ming Li Professor of Life Sciences delivered an online lecture on “Food Security and Bio-Energy”. He introduced the factors affecting food security in China, the current status and related responsive strategies. He also gave a brief introduction on the issues related to bio-energy development in China, and detailed how science is key to building food security and harnessing bio-energy for a brighter future.

Science on Encounters of the Artful Kind – Dr. TONG Shiu Sing

Art and science may seem like two unrelated disciplines, but Dr. TONG Shiu Sing of the Department of Physics recently explained the science behind historical artefacts in a video jointly presented by the Art Museum and the Alumni Affairs Office. He demonstrated how a hollow brick can act as an amplifier as an example of resonance. Check out the video on YouTube!

(Video in Cantonese)

Honours & Awards

Faculty Exemplary Teaching Award 2021

The Faculty would like to pay tribute to our members for their quality teaching. Congratulations to teachers who are awarded the Faculty Exemplary Teaching Award 2021!

Professor CHOW Hei Man Kim (School of Life Sciences)
Professor TSANG Suk Ying Faye (School of Life Sciences)
Professor KWONG Fuk Yee (Department of Chemistry)
Dr. CHAN Kai Leung (Department of Mathematics)
Professor CHING Shuk Chi Emily (Department of Physics)
Professor CHAN Kin Wai Keith (Department of Statistics)
Professor YANG Hongfeng (Earth System Science Programme)

Vice-Chancellor’s Exemplary Teaching Award 2021

Professor CHING Shuk Chi Emily from the Department of Physics has been selected for the Vice-Chancellor’s Exemplary Teaching Award 2021.

Science Students Receiving the Innovation and Technology Scholarship 2022

LAU Shu Lam (Earth System Science) and LUI Leif (Physics) received the Innovation and Technology Scholarship 2022. The young innovators will receive a scholarship up to HK$150,000 and join a wide range of elite training programmes to widen their international exposure.

Shu Lam (4th from left in the second photo) and Leif (2nd from left) attended the Award Presentation Ceremony on 6 June 2022.

Student Sharing

LAU Shu Lam (Earth System Science)

Climate change affects all walks of life across the globe. I am aspired to work in the sustainability consulting field and would like to keep abreast of the latest green technologies in various industries.

I felt honoured to join the community of InnoTech Scholars. The Scholarship offers me the opportunity to communicate with industry specialists through its mentorship programme. I am sure I can gain great insights into the development of green technologies locally.

High-latitude countries that are vulnerable to extreme weather events caused by climate change have dedicated efforts to reduce carbon emission and are said to have a high sustainability literacy. I plan to go to the University of Helsinki in Finland to study courses about environmental sciences and technologies, and how environmental awareness is raised through education.

LUI Leif (Physics)

I aspire to be a theoretical physicist working in particle physics, astrophysics, and cosmology. I believe the Scholarship will greatly enhance my research experience through its overseas research and local internship opportunities.

I am most excited to go to Caltech in the US to attend public lectures and graduate classes to enrich my knowledge in physics and mathematics. My grandfather always encourages me along the journey through his words, “Treat learning science as your hobby rather than an obligation. Make learning science as something you look forward to doing every day in your life”. I hope I can make contribution to the field through my dedication and become the one who encourages other young scientists someday.

QFRM Student Won the 1st Place in Joint-University Algorithmic Trading Competition

Vincent CHENG (Quantitative Finance and Risk Management Science) won the first place in “Best Return”, “Best Sharpe”, and “Best Strategy Design” in the Joint-University Algo FX Trading Challenge 2021 Global organized by Algo Challenge Association.

About 200 contestants from local and international prestigious institutions took part in this global event. Vincent’s impressive individual participation in his team Plutus has yielded remarkable results in the competition.

Vincent is happy to be awarded the first place in all three categories of the competition. He found the competition a wonderful opportunity to put his knowledge into practice and added, “We coded an algorithmic forex trading strategy, which went through trading simulations of both historical and live market data. We had been struggling to develop trading strategies at first. After trial and error, we created trading signals based on various macroeconomic data series and completed the task”. The competition was a great chance to expand his knowledge in the field and hone his presentation skills.

Research Poster Exhibition – Best Poster Presentation Awards 2022

The Research Poster Exhibition co-organised by the CUHK Library, the Graduate School, and the Independent Learning Centre was held in May 2022. Doctoral students from the Faculty of Science showcased their research work and received impressive results.

LAU Tsun Ming


LIN Yuhong (on Zoom)

2nd Runner-up:

LAU Tsun Ming (PhD student in Biochemistry)
Poster title:
Metabolic Reprogramming and Physiological Changes in Astrocytes – The Case Study in Alcohol Misuse

Honourable Mention Award:

Hemraj BHATTARAI (PhD student in Earth and Atmospheric Sciences)
Poster title:
Impacts of Changes in Land Use, Climate, and Emissions on Global Air Quality by 2050

LIN Yuhong (PhD student in Food and Nutritional Sciences)
Poster title:
Characterization of Volatile Odorous Components in Houttuynia cordata Thunb. and Effects of Its Exact on Plasma Cholesterol and Gut Microbiota in Hypercholesterolemic Hamsters

Congratulations to all awardees! More photos are available on the library website.

Civility, Compassion, and Change for Good
Serving with Passion and Care – CHAN Tek Long

Chemistry alumnus Dr. CHAN Tek Long served in the Chemistry Society and was a helpful senior to fellow Macau students when he was a student at CUHK. Fueled by his passion for science and a care for others, he moved back to Macau after completing his PhD degree under the supervision of Professor XIE Zuowei and is now a Technical Officer at the municipal laboratory working on food safety. Despite his busy work in safeguarding the food safety in Macau, he has taken up the presidency in the CUHK Alumni Association in Macau last year and can’t wait to share with you his ambitious plans for the two-year presidency.

More +

Statistics Alumnus Dr. YAN Tinjin received Itarle Scholarship 2020/21

Dr. YAN Tinjin (Statistics) was awarded the Itarle Scholarship 2020/21 in recognition of his outstanding research and scholarly performance in the thesis. He is now working in East China Normal University as an Assistant Professor.

More +

Mathematics Alumna Sharing:
Life as Data Scientist Can Make a World of Difference

Video (In Cantonese with English subtitles)

Chemistry Alumnus Professor Billy NG was selected one of the “2022 Class of Young Global Leaders (YGLs)” by World Economic Forum

More +

Women in Science – In Dialogue with Professor CHING Shuk Chi Emily

“If you choose a subject that you love, then you will do well,” said Professor Emily CHING of the Department of Physics in the inaugural “Women in Science” talk hosted by Professor Phillip YAM, Assistant Dean (Education) on 8 April 2022. Professor Ching shared with us her personal experiences beginning from her days as a high school student, undergraduate studies, postgraduate education, to embarking on a career as a theoretical physicist in a candid dialogue. There might be obstacles ahead of us, but Professor Ching reminds us that genuine interest and passion will guide us to persevere and overcome them along the way.

Photo Album

Science Faculty Research Day 2022

Every year, the Faculty of Science organises a Research Day where researchers gather to share ideas and experiences in advancing research and collaboration in the Faculty and CUHK. This year’s Research Day was held online on 19 May 2022 with the theme of “Collaborative and Impactful Research in Science”.

We are glad to have invited Professor QIN Ling, Choh-Ming Li Professor of Orthopaedics and Traumatology from the Faculty of Medicine, to share his insights on his impactful translational research in the keynote speech. Professor Qin recalled how his own bone fracture years ago eventually led to the fruitful collaboration in developing a novel type of biodegradable and bioactive orthopaedic implants, which is now clinically proved to be effective in reducing the recovery time and occurrences of complications for patients.

The Research Day this year also featured the sharing by five colleagues from the Faculty of Science representing collaborative research teams, including Prof. CHAN Man Nin and Prof. YANG Hongfeng in Earth System Science, Prof. Michael Kenneth CHAN in Life Sciences, Prof. LU Xinhui in Physics, and Prof. WEI Yingying in Statistics. They shared the highlights of their latest collaborative research projects supported by Faculty of Science Collaborative Research Impact Matching Scheme (CRIMS).

It is our hope that the Science Faculty Research Day 2022 will foster the Faculty’s initiatives to promote discussion towards collaborative research development between researchers in different disciplines and units and reinforce the multi-disciplinary and impactful collaboration in Science Faculty, CUHK and beyond.

Photo Album

10th Anniversary Symposium of the Shiu-Ying Hu Herbarium

This year is an important milestone for Shiu-Ying Hu Herbarium since its establishment in 2012. On the occasion of the celebration of the 10th anniversary of our Herbarium, and with the full support from our honorable guests and distinguished speakers and the engagement of more than 350 participants, a symposium was successfully held on 22 May 2022.

Professor SONG Chunshan, Dean of Science, and Professor WONG Kam Bo, Director of School of Life Sciences, were invited to commence the Symposium by giving the welcome speech. The morning session comprised the talks of cutting-edge research and new findings by scholars from world-renowned research units. Through sharing Professor Hu’s lifetime achievements and contributions by her family, friends, and colleagues, participants gained a deeper understanding of legacy of Professor Shiu-Ying Hu in the afternoon session.

You are most welcome to learn more about the Herbarium HERE.

The 5th International Conference on Organometallics and Catalysis

The 5th International Conference on Organometallics and Catalysis (OM&CAT-5), organized by the Department of Chemistry, was successfully held as a virtual conference during 12-15 June 2022 through ZOOM Webinar. It is a biennial conference built on the success of the previous four meetings held in Beijing, Nara, Seoul and Taipei. It was originally scheduled in June 2020, but it was postponed to June 2022 and held as a virtual conference due to the outbreak of COVID-19.

Professor SONG Chunshan gave a welcome speech to the conference participants at the Opening Ceremony on 12 June 2022. The conference consisted of 3 plenary lectures, 15 invited lectures and 11 young invited lectures in the 4-day virtual conference, covering all major research areas related to Organometallics and Catalysis. There were more than 1,300 academic scholars and postgraduate students from all over the world registered to this virtual conference, which is the largest body of registrants in the history of OM&CAT conference. Professor XIE Zuowei, Chairman of the Local Organizing Committee of OM&CAT-5, gave the closing remarks at the closing ceremony and announced that the next OM&CAT conference will be held in Tianjin, China in 2024.

More about the Conference

ZOOM Into Science 2022 Online Lectures

Riding on the success of the “ZOOM Into Science” Lecture Series in the past two years, the Faculty delivered six online lectures this year in March and April 2022. The lectures received much support and attracted over 1,770 participants to join.