Queen Mary wins Cathay Pacific's New Horizons Award at the Cathay Pacific China Business Awards

Queen Mary, University of London was named the winner of the New Horizons category in the Cathay Pacific China Business Awards 2011 – a prestigious awards scheme designed to acknowledge and celebrate UK business dynamism and success in Hong Kong and China - which took place at London’s Mandarin Oriental Hotel on Friday 13 January 2012.

16 January 2012

Queen Mary's Professor Laurie Cuthbert (centre) accepts the New Horizons award from Angus Barclay, General Manager Europe for Cathay Pacific (centre left) and Douglas Flint, Group Chairman of HSBC (centre right) at the Cathay Pacific China Business Awards

One of three award categories, the New Horizons Award recognises a single project or initiative that displays compelling evidence of dedication to China and/or Hong Kong through business innovation, research projects, or examples of environmental or corporate social responsibility activity. 

A panel of judges made up of senior representatives from Cathay Pacific, The China-Britain Business Council, HSBC and The Daily Telegraph reviewed numerous entries before choosing Queen Mary as the winner of the New Horizons award.

Amongst the largest of the University of London colleges, Queen Mary’s 3,000 academic staff deliver degree programmes and research across three faculties: Science and Engineering; Humanities and Social Sciences and the School of Medicine and Dentistry.

Their ground-breaking model is a collaboration between Queen Mary (QM) and Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications (BUPT) in a joint Degree Programme launched in 2004.  This unique programme allows students to graduate with two degrees – one from BUPT and one from the University of London. There are currently over 2,000 students enrolled in the joint degree.

The programme draws on the best aspects from both systems – mathematical and scientific rigour from China and engineering and creative problem-solving skills from the UK.  All teaching takes place in China in English, with 50 per cent of teaching from each university, using core teaching staff from the UK who fly out to teach in Beijing, teaching in a ‘block’ mode to cover each module.  They thus ensure that the best teachers from their UK staff provide the courses in person in China.

Through the programme, QM has strengthened the analytical and communication skills for engineering students in China to present an idea coherently and to take part in technical discussions.  The key benefit is a unique contribution in developing highly skilled engineering graduates in China: a new style of Chinese engineers who are at ease on an international level and who also enhance Sino-British relations.

The judging panel was impressed by the innovation of this joint programme that is currently unique in China.  Providing the teaching ‘blocks’, it also bolsters the employment requirement for educational professionals in the UK.

Queen Mary’s Professor Laurie Cuthbert, accepted the award on behalf of the College from HSBC’s Group Chairman, Douglas Flint and Cathay Pacific’s General Manager Europe, Angus Barclay at an awards luncheon held at The Mandarin Oriental, London attended by leading business figures from the UK, Hong Kong and China. 

Professor Cuthbert commented: “To receive recognition for our work with students in the UK and China is testament to the dedication of our staff, to the staff from BUPT, to this programme, and in turn enhancing Sino-British relations.  We hope that graduates really feel the benefits of their experiences having completed the programme."

Angus Barclay, General Manager Europe, Cathay Pacific, said: “Each year the entries for the Cathay Pacific China Business Awards are of a very high standard. This year the judges were extremely impressed by the quality and diversity of the entrants. It is inspiring to see just how many UK organisations are choosing to make the most of the business opportunities available in China.  As the leading airline of Hong Kong, Cathay Pacific Airways has a long history of facilitating links between businesses trading in the UK and China. The Cathay Pacific China Business Awards provide a platform for us to recognise and celebrate the ongoing growth of the relationships forged between the UK, China and Hong Kong.”

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