• Teaching & Learning
New CityU undergraduate degree boosts veterinary medicine in Hong Kong

Emily Law
A six-year bachelor of veterinary medicine programme (BVM) at City University of Hong Kong (CityU) represents a milestone in the development of veterinary education in Hong Kong and the region.

The BVM at CityU’s School of Veterinary Medicine (SVM) will promote One Health and sustainable development, and expand educational choice and career paths for our youth. The programme commences in the academic year 2017–18.

The vision for developing a centre of excellence in veterinary education at CityU was first initiated by Professor Way Kuo, CityU President and the senior management in July 2008 when Dr Chung Shui-ming was then the Chairman of the University Council. It formed a core initiative in the University’s Strategic Plan 2010–2015, and was endorsed by the Senate and supported by the University Council and successive University Council Chairmen.

A long-term strategic partnership was established with the College of Veterinary Medicine (CVM) at Cornell University, US in 2009 to develop this ground-breaking initiative. This led to the establishment of CityU’s School of Veterinary Medicine in collaboration with Cornell University in 2014, and a collaborative PhD programme in 2015.
 
The six-year BVM has been jointly developed by the two institutions to meet the Australasian Veterinary Boards Council’s (AVBC) accreditation standards, and to respond to the increasing demand for well trained and accredited veterinary surgeons in Hong Kong and beyond. The University has recently acquired the prestigious Peace Avenue Veterinary Clinic which will form a significant part of the SVM animal clinic, while a veterinary disease research diagnostic laboratory will be in place before mid-2017, too.
 
The BVM programme will start out on a self-financing basis from the 2017–18 academic year, before proposing the introduction of a publicly funded BVM in the University’s Academic Development Proposal (ADP) to the University Grants Committee (UGC) for the 2019–20 to 2021–22 triennium. The programme will have an annual intake of 10 to 20 students initially in the first two years (2017–18 and 2018–19) of its implementation.

In this regard, we thank the Education Bureau for considering our May 2016 BVM proposal and for agreeing that there is a prima facie case for introducing a professionally accredited undergraduate programme in veterinary medicine in Hong Kong. We also appreciate the initial feedback from the UGC Secretariat to facilitate the University’s consideration on how to move forward with our proposal for a publicly funded veterinary programme.
 
The University is very grateful to University Council and Chairman, Mr Herman Hu Shao-ming, CityU colleagues, alumni, the Convocation, CityU Eminence Society, and all our generous donors and friends in the community for their staunch support and valuable advice over the past eight years.