Volunteer to stay connected

Alumni Edward Chiu (BEc 1971) and David Chan (BEc 1988, LLB 1990) have clocked up more than 40 years of volunteering to Monash University between them. Their expertise, support and...

Alumni Edward Chiu (BEc 1971) and David Chan (BEc 1988, LLB 1990) have clocked up more than 40 years of volunteering to Monash University between them. Their expertise, support and advice has been a driving force behind the success of the Monash University Hong Kong Alumni Association (MUHKAA) – the University’s longest-running alumni network.

Edward works as an Associate Professor at Hong Kong’s Centennial College - a new role. Prior to working at the college, he taught accounting and finance at the University of Hong Kong, after working for many years in the commercial sector including at accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers.

He is MUKKAA’s longest-serving committee member, joining in 1990 - one year after its inception. Despite his busy career, since graduating, Edward says his aim has been to give back to his alma mater.

“Volunteering for Monash is time well spent,” he said. “I can use my knowledge, expertise and experience to contribute to the community in a meaningful way.

“As a committee member of the MUHKAA, we organise academic and social activities for fellow alumni.  It is a great way to network and stay connected with Monash.”

David agreed: “Upon my return to Hong Kong in 1991, I felt that the best way to keep my linkage with Monash was through the alumni group. It was also a very good way to enlarge my social network.

“Initially, I only knew a couple of my friends but my group size quickly grew from there. I have many old friends whom I have known for more than 15 years from the alumni group, and I treasure their friendships very much.”

David is the Assistant Director of Public Prosecutions for the Department of Justice in Hong Kong. Not surprisingly, over the past 21 years he has acted as MUHKAA’s legal advisor as well as treasurer, secretary, vice-president, and president.

David volunteered with MUHKAA for much of the same reasons as Edward.

“The five years that I spent at Monash was an important stage of my life,” he said. “Not only was I able to complete my academic qualifications, I was able to acquire skills in interacting with people, and gain an insight into how to become a responsible member of the society.”

Edward said one of the most enjoyable aspects of being involved in the network was getting to be a part of Monash graduation ceremonies in Hong Kong.

“We are always happy to help out whenever Monash representatives or delegates come to Hong Kong,” he said. “It’s great to be a part of the students’ big day.”

“We’re also seeing more and more graduates joining our group and mingling with other alumni at various events. They are the MUHKAA leaders of the future.”

David encouraged his fellow alumni to get involved in their local networks.

“Being a volunteer for Monash may occupy some of your spare time but the return can be very rewarding,” he said. “By giving a helping hand, you will find yourself working and mingling with people whom you can easily associate with, as you all share a common bond.”

“We are in a sense promoting Monash and, as a consequence, Monash is now widely-regarded as an outstanding tertiary institution in the local society. Once I realised this, I understood that together we have made a difference. You can achieve this too.”

Find out how you can get involved in networks in your local area.