MDes Talks: From Orientation Week - The Mindset for Learning

Every start of classes is the same: joy, anxiety, meeting new people, curiosity about what's coming, the eager to learn new things, a whole world of possibilities and opportunities. This time, I wasn't expecting something different – even as a student in a Master of Design programme – meaning that you are not new in starting classes and you are not starting from zero since you already have some knowledge in a specific theme through undergraduate education and corresponding work experience.

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University

The Hong Kong Polytechnic University gives the warmest welcoming week for master’s students. Not only because they organise games with prizes, or they provide you with the medical, psychological and health support system. More than concerning about academic life and health assistance, they seem to care about something else, people.

People First

Usually, a regular education institute will just make its job and establish a relationship based on the exchange of knowledge (and also money). But a good institution will invest in something more strong: a bond, the feeling of belonging to a “family”.

Why do that?

Everything you give or transmit comes back to you. When you take care and invest in people, they will start to make things in a passionate way and also transmit that caring. When people work with passion and pass this good vibes, the world can become kinder and a better place to live.

Work Harder

In this week I heard about pushing harder no matter the situation, more than once. Coincidence maybe? This can be a kind of a cliché, but for an international student, this is very encouraging.

MDes Orientation

The first time was during the welcoming presentation from the Master of Design Scheme Leader, Prof. Laurent Gutierrez. He talked about new experiences, opportunities and challenges in this new academic year and that, the future and all this challenges just depended on us. The School and the team of professors give the tools, but the hard work is ours.

DiD for Team Building

The second time was during a team building activity facilitated by “Dialogue in the Dark”, a social enterprise hosting an exhibition on this theme in Kowloon. It was to put participants in the position of and experience as a blind person. The activities proposed in this workshop make you rethink the way you work as a team, the way you communicate with other people, and also the way you act when you see someone in need. But this activity goes beyond that. As one of the instructors said, it is about also about knowing your own real potential and using it in the adversities.

MDes Orientation - workshops


So let's see what's is coming next !

Little notes about Hong Kong's first impressions:

  • People are always open to help you
  • Everybody work hard and most of them, still have a smile on their faces
  • You can see people respecting each other
  • Sharing is important, especially when everybody gathers together to have a great meal
  • Everything is speeded up in Hong Kong...time, escalators, movement of people

Photo Credit: Sylvia Yeung

Posted by Sylvia Yeung - Living the 20's years old issues and doubts. Born in Brazil, with the heart in Hong Kong. Graduated in Architecture and Urban Planning at Mackenzie Presbyterian University, Sao Paulo. Living and exploring the concrete jungle and mix of emotions contained in the city where the journey of the ancestors began. A current Master's student in Urban Environments Design (MDes).
MDes Talks is a series of Student Blogs contributed by students in different specialisms under the Master of Design Scheme. It is set out to share students’ first-hand experience in the d-school pedagogy, their projects, takeaways, and student life in general.