Embracing Individuality
An Interview with MCMC Master Prof Kevin Thompson

Text:MD Shakhawat Hossain │ Photo:Communications Office

One of ten residential colleges (RC) at UM, Moon Chun Memorial College (MCMC) embraces individuality, and nurtures talent through a vibrant community enhanced by music, science, sports and arts. Led by College

Master Prof Kevin Thompson, MCMC enables opportunities for students to grow alongside collegiate community, peer and faculty, and enrich lives of all on campus, through town and gown, regional and international society at large.

Prof _ompson, College Master

Integrating Students on Campus

Prof Thompson is widely recognised as a consummate musician, a dedicated educator, and a passionate advocate of arts and education for all. His contributions to education and the arts have garnered the highest awards. He received the Order of the British Empire from her Majesty the Queen in 2011. In 2012, he was made a Knight Officer Arts et des Lettres. In 2017, he was appointed Knight Chevalier de l’Ordre National de la Légion d’honneur, France’s highest order of merit, by M Emmanuel Macron, president of the French Republic. Before joining UM, Prof Thompson was the president of the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, Dartington College, and the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts.

He strives to unleash students’ potential and talent, encourages undergrads to faculty to embrace each other’s uniqueness, ‘We invite many consuls general, international business leaders, artists and faculty across disciplines to interact with the collegiate community. People with adept interpersonal skills make friends easily, relate well to all they encounter and often shine in life. Those rounded social, academic and interpersonal skills are attractive across fields, disciplines and business sectors, and are able to travel across borders, cultural and societal with relative ease of access.’

A strength of our colleges that we are extremely fit and sporty

Health Is Wealthly Living

Prof Thompson cares about students’ all round development, in particular their mental, psychological and physical wellbeing. He says, ‘A strength of our college is that we are extremely fit and sporty. We have a professionally equipped gym and everyone is encouraged to work out. We emphasise physical training, and last year our football team, basketball team, and swimming team reached the championships in varsity competitions. Arts and sports draw us together.’ MCMC doesn’t have vending machines, because we want to encourage and maintain a healthy diet regime, not only in terms of our daily lives in college but also for the rest of our lives – education and healthy living, for life.

Enabling Students for Life

MCMC encourages students to expand their networks not only on campus but also globally. Exchange

programmes are available to help students gain interculturality of experience and understand what is happening in other parts of the world, in other peoples’ lives. ‘MCMC exchange programmes in Europe, Japan, and Asia, as well as summer language immersion programmes, embrace the prestigious ‘Légion d’honneur Summer French Language programme, for students to spend an entire summer in France to acquire French and something of the French lifestyle,’ says Prof Thompson.

‘We strive to prepare the students not just for careers, but also for lives which are rich and rewarding, for lifelong and fulfilling employability,’ Prof Thompson explains. ‘We have high expectations for our students, for their finding rewarding enriching careers whatever they do in the future but more importantly, for their finding fulfilment and joy in life.’