On March 20th, Some 60 representatives of Soochow University’s administrative heads, faculty, staff and students paid tribute to three of the school’s rebuilders in the early days of its reactivation in Taiwan. Without their leadership and contributions, Soochow would not have achieved what it is and has today, according to the school administration.
A few days after Soochow celebrated its 119th birthday, in the morning the University’s chief executives, faculty members and students, led by President Wei-Ta Pan, Vice President Wei-Liang Chao and Vice President Bau-Tscheng Dung, paid their respect at the graves of Dr. Wang Chung-Hui and his wife, and the ones of Dr. C. Y. Stone (Shih Chao-Yong) and his wife, which are all located at the Soochow’s Waishuanghsi campus. Mr. Shou-Cheng Wang, the oldest grandson of the late Chairman of the School Board Wang Chung-Hui, and Ms. Yi-Jen Wang appeared representing the Wang family.
In the afternoon, the representatives visited the graves of Dr. Joseph K. Twanmoh in Yangmingshan to pay their respects. Professor of Soochow’s Department of Social Work Tsung-Chieh Ma, the grandniece of the late President Joseph K. Twanmoh, appeared on behalf of the family. Former Dean of the School of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences Cheng-Yu Hsieh briefly described the great achievements of these three most contributive fathers after its reactivation in Taiwan.
In 1951, Soochow University was reactivated in Taiwan as Soochow Preparatory School, then reorganized as Soochow Law College, and finally became a full university. Even though Soochow’s alumni and faculty members played an integral role in making this happen, but all this would not have been possible without the great contributions made by the late Chairman of the School Board Wang Chung-Hui, the two late Presidents C. Y. Stone (Shih Chao-yong) and Joseph K. Twanmoh.
“We must follow funeral rituals and worship our ancestors so as to ensure the virtue of our people,” President Wei-Ta Pan reminded everyone of the importance of knowing one’s roots to gain a better understanding of him- or herself. Pan added that had Dr. Wang Chung-Hui not stepped up to assume the position of Chairman of the School Board during the critical period of Soochow’s reactivation in Taiwan, or had he not helped Soochow gain a foothold during that tumultuous era, the University would not be the great educational institution it is today.
During the terms of the late Dr. C. Y. Stone as president, Soochow went from a college with just three departments (Law, Political Science, and Economics) to a complete university with three schools (Liberal Arts and Social Sciences, Law, and Business) and eight departments (Law, Political Science, Economics, Accounting, Chinese Literature, Foreign Languages, Business, and Mathematics). In addition, the University was moved from Hangkou Street to its current location in Waishuanghsi. In the 11 years when he was in office, a total of 11 buildings were built. Indeed, he was the pioneer architect of Soochow’s future.
The late former president Dr. Joseph K. Twanmoh spent the first half of his life to serving the government and dedicated the rest of his life to education. During his terms for 14 years, a total of 26 departments, institutes, and centers were established. Furthermore, 14 buildings were erected during this time period, making Soochow University a prestigious higher education institution in Taiwan. During the 14 years when Twanmoh served as president, he did not receive a penny for his work. In his later life, he donated all his savings as well as a private building to the University, and set up the “Joseph K. Twanmoh Lecture Fund,” all for the good of the students.
The memorial service for Soochow’s late Chairman of the School Board and late Presidents was in conjunction with the Chinese Language Center’s event “Campus Spring Outing in Remembrance of Old Friends.” In addition to Soochow University’s faculty members and students, exchange students from Japan, Korea, Vietnam and Thailand also participated. Through remembering those who played great roles in making Soochow the university that it is today, students from all over the world were able to truly understand the meaning of the Chinese idiom “remembering one’s roots and showing gratitude.”
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