THE Big launch at UP, UP welcomes new students

On 16 December, UP welcomed an excited group of 333 students as they joined UP for the first time. Big Launch is planned to mark the beginning of a new life with new routines and a new way of thinking. It also represents a time of new challenges and new opportunities. After the traditional Blessing Dance, students were addressed by the Vice Chancellor Professor Ian Findlay and then by UP’s Chancellor, H.E. SOK Puthyvuth. His Excellency reminded students that they were setting out on set out on an exciting journey, and that they would be well supported on their way. He noted that the academic success and well-being of our students is as important to UP as it is to them.

His Excellency told the students of UP”s mission to Honour Self, Respect Others and Develop the Community, and of our values of excellence, integrity, tolerance, diversity, innovation and service in everything we do. He reminded them that UP places great emphasis on innovation in learning and teaching, entrepreneurship and the societal impact of research, and the professional and personal skills that create and sustain the future for them and for Cambodia.

His Excellency encouraged students to do their own thinking: to be critical and construct their own knowledge, gathering evidence, analysing it and arriving at their own conclusion. He reminded them that knowledge is a lifelong pursuit in which it is important to stay curious, reflective and open-minded.

After an enthusiastic response from our new students, His Excellency adjourned to UP”s Learning Centre, to officially open our new eLearning Centre. The eLearning Centre houses high-speed computers with the latest software and access to a huge repository of online resources. UP has five people including Digital Facilitators specifically recruited to support student learning and to advise teaching staff to bring L&T into the 21st Century.

The eLearning Centre also has brightly coloured, very comfortable bean bags for students to relax in why they discuss their studies, do some quiet research, or hold lively discussions.

Our new students spent the rest of the day on guided tours around the campus, meeting their faculty teaching staff, and familiarizing themselves with the places and courses that will rule their study lives for the next few years. Later, there was enthusiastic karaoke performances, to be followed during the remainder of Orientation Week by further activities with the teaching faculties and more fun as the students get to know new friends and study buddies and become to feel more at home at UP.