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Students Need to Know More on Mainland
Hong Kong students, to better capitalize on the rising mainland market, should enhance their understanding of the mainland and brush up their Putonghua language skills.

That is the view of several mainland students among the first batch to graduate from Hong Kong Polytechnic University under a special program.

"Many Hong Kong students have misconceptions about the mainland and they still have a strong sense of superiority," said Wang Jun, a 22-year-old student from Shanghai.

Picked from Shanghai-based Tongji University, Wang was lucky enough to study in Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PU), thanks to the Outstanding Student Program sponsored by Hong Kong Jockey Club.

The annual program aims to enhance mutual understanding between young people from both sides and help foster a scholarly and learning culture in the local university.

"Quite a few Hong Kong students told me that the mainland was a place of soaring crime rate, dirty environment and strict control on human rights," said Wang, who has just achieved a degree in civil and environmental engineering and wishes to pursue his master degree at PU.

"But they have changed their minds since they traveled to Shanghai and other mainland cities, stunned by the rapid development there," Wang added.

Li Mengzhou who holds a degree in design echoed that Hong Kong students could be more competitive if they bolstered their knowledge of the mainland.

Li, who is also from Shanghai, went on to say that despite their narrow view, Hong Kong students excel in promoting and organizing after-class activities, a kind of ability helpful for their future careers.

(China Daily HK Edition July 15, 2002)

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