Hey there. My name is Amy and I’m on a semester-long exchange at the City University, Hong Kong (CityU). If you’re interested in exchange in Hong Kong, check out my previous blog post here. In this post, I’ll be expanding more in depth about the subjects I wrote in my previous blog. Hopefully this is useful to any students considering CityU at Hong Kong.
The most important things first: Accommodation! CityU has student dorms that’s a 15 minute breezy stroll from Academic 1 (main building in AC1). These 2 bed or 1 bed dorms have shared bathrooms, shared kitchens, as well as a common room on each floor. The dorm rooms are split up by their halls, and each hall is run by a student body, who organise events for the residents, such as dessert nights and calligraphy classes.
I reside at CampusHK, a private student accommodation that’s located in the New Territories. It’s further away from CityU, about 40 minutes on public transport (30 minutes by the free, daily shuttle bus that CampusHK provides that goes straight to uni for the students). I wrote previously about CampusHK here.
There are other accommodation options available, such as Apple Dorms in Sham Shui Po (a few ‘burbs over from CityU, 10-15mins on the Metro), as well as finding private rooms and apartments; however much like Sydney, the current affordable housing climate in Hong Kong is scarce, and that which is available is pricey.
The university has a main library that spans multiple floors. The CityU Run Run Shaw Library, as I learned, is not located in the Run Run Shaw Media Creative Centre (which is located up a hell of a hill), but actually in Academic 1 (AC1), the main building of CityU. The Run Run Shaw brothers are famous in Hong Kong and super influential figures in the Asian entertainment industry. Apparently every university or educational institute in Hong Kong sports a space named after the brothers!
Buildings are ordered by building number, then colour zone (Y for Yellow, B for Blue, etc.), level, and finally, room. For example, my Thursday morning class is in AC1 Y5202. This made for a very confusing first couple of weeks but eventually you get used to it and even appreciate the colours that break up an otherwise bland looking building.
Classrooms are fairly modern, all that I’ve been in are equipped with projectors and lecturn desks with inbuilt computers. Lecture theatres have double projector screens, powerpoints for chargers under the desks, and adjustable lighting by zone which comes in handy when watching videos on the big screen (oooh romantic).
Other facilities include computer rooms, a swimming pool, gym, outdoor basketball courts (I haven’t found any indoor ones yet but I’m sure they exist) and heaps of multi-function rooms that are used as sport, music, dance and choir rehearsal spaces, and as student/study spaces in between rehearsals.
There is a canteen hall that is located at the student residence, which is convenient for those students who nabbed a dorm room.
Almost each academic building has a cafeteria which provide affordable, filling meals. The main cafeteria is at AC1, which sells Cantonese based fare, AC2 has a wider range of Asian and Western food – burgers, salads, Japanese, Vietnamese, Chinese- and AC3 sells the classic Hong Kong breakfast and also some fusion of Eastern/Western food. There is also a fancier restaurant serving dim sum, and a range of smaller cafes and stands scattered around uni that sell coffee, light lunches, snacks, and drinks, as well as a newly opened kebab shop.
If you find yourself at uni for a whole day and have to fend for yourself for breakfast, lunch and dinner, you’ll be able to afford all meals, including snacks and drinks in between, for around 120HKD a day (about 20AUD), which is a great price and much more affordable than Sydney.
Societies and student life
There are a whole host of student clubs in CityU, ranging from degree specific societies (e.g., Electrical Engineering, Accounting) to interest (e.g., Film Society, Travelling Club) to sports (e.g., Badminton, Rowing, Dance Society). So far, I’ve joined the Taekwondo society, and whilst their English is limited, they’re welcoming and friendly. In addition, you’re encouraged to attend performances by the Multi-cultural Centre X CityU (facebook page here), who put on multicultural programmes for students to enjoy, such as Thai dessert making workshops, city tours of different minority groups in Hong Kong, and most recently, a mask changing performance.
So there we have it! To anyone considering HK as an exchange destination, hopefully this information is helpful!
Amy Chang 11970326 IT