In recognition of the excellent leadership and promotion by Prof. Emily Ying Yang Chan, Director of CCOUC, in the teaching, learning and research of disaster and medical humanitarian response, the University Grants Committee (UGC) of Hong Kong has awarded her the 2017 UGC Teaching Award.
Prof. Joseph J.Y. Sung, Vice-Chancellor and President of The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK), said, “My sincere congratulations to Prof. Emily Chan. Prof. Chan, who specializes in disaster and medical humanitarian response, is an experienced scholar with global vision. She has demonstrated her leadership in various projects in which she has been taking a leading role and has helped maximize the practical and exchange opportunities for local students and the CUHK team. At the same time, she has broadened their horizons and facilitated experience sharing among relevant international organizations. We are so proud of her success.”
Prof. Chan is deeply honoured to receive the award, “The award is recognition of the importance of knowledge transfer of disaster and medical humanitarian response and research on disaster risk management in the local tertiary education sector. I could not have achieved this distinguished result without the support from my team. I would like to extend my vote of thanks to my colleagues who have been working hard together with me, and to the students who gave me tremendous support. The enthusiasm from students in the field of disaster and medical humanitarian work inspires me to go the extra mile.”
Prof. Chan, recipient of the 2017 UGC Teaching Award – General Faculty Members/Teams, had over a decade-long experience in humanitarian intervention in the world before joining the Faculty of Medicine, CUHK in 2006.
The frontline medical humanitarian experience reinforced Prof. Chan’s belief in the importance of establishing research in Hong Kong’s tertiary education sector that can be translated into evidence-based practice in the field of public health as well as disaster and medical humanitarian response worldwide. This strengthens the city’s role in having robust academic research to ultimately reduce disaster risk.
Prof. Chan initiated and has been leading the Ethnic Minority Health Project, an interdisciplinary global field experiential teaching and learning programme, and triggered the establishment of the Collaborating Centre of Oxford University and CUHK for Disaster and Medical Humanitarian Response (CCOUC) in April 2011. She has been the Director of CCCOUC since then. CCOUC aims to minimize the negative health impact of disasters experienced by vulnerable populations in the region by serving as a platform for research, education, and community knowledge transfer in the areas of disaster and medical humanitarian crisis policy development, planning, and response. Prof. Chan has been emphasizing the importance of constructing knowledge of students and by maximizing overseas learning opportunities for local students. Teaching, learning and research opportunities with various UGC-funded institutions have therefore been strengthened as well. Her unique contribution to the Hong Kong academic setting lies in her effort to pull together an extensive global field-based training network through her projects and academic partners, and outcomes of such student-oriented teaching approach are feasible and applicable in reality.
UGC is the funding body of the eight publicly-funded universities in Hong Kong. The annual UGC Teaching Award was introduced in 2011 to honour those who excel in teaching in the UGC-funded universities and their leadership in and scholarly contribution to teaching and learning within and across institutions, with two awards in the General Faculty Members/Teams category and one in the Early Career Faculty Members category.