From our founding days to the present, we have been upholding our mission for more than a century. The Wah Yan story is one of adaptation and growth. Wah Yan College was founded on 16th December 1919 by Mr. Tsui Yan Sau, Peter. There were four students on the first day of school. It was not long before we became the first Grant-In-Aid school founded and managed by a Chinese in 1922. Our extraordinary performance in the early days drew the attention of the Jesuits, who agreed to take over in 1932. The two Wah Yans have served as the Jesuits’ foothold in Hong Kong ever since.

Our commitment to education has never been deterred by any adversity, not even by the Japanese occupation, during which we continued teaching under unfavourable circumstances. After surviving the hard years, we moved into our current Mount Parish campus in 1955. We treasure the heritage that our Jesuit fathers and alumni have built for us, and we strive to lead Wah Yan into a new century of growth.

SCHOOL BADGE

The badge of Wah Yan is divided into four quarters by a Cross in red, under which are the words that the Emperor Constantine is said to have seen in the sky the night before he fought his greatest battle.
The words are in Latin and the phrase “In Hoc Signo Vinces”, which means “In this Sign, you shall conquer”, is our school motto. In the name of Christ, we shall conquer ourselves.

The five stars set in the blue represent “Ng Wah”, the district from which Mr. Tsui Yan Sau, Peter, the founder of Wah Yan, came. They also embody the ideas of Virtue, Wisdom, Sportsmanship, Cooperation and Elegance as well as Benevolence, Justice, Courtesy, Wisdom, and Faith.

The blue symbolizes the sea as Hong Kong is surrounded by sea. The Cross in red reminds us of the great love of Jesus Christ for all men since He shed His blood for us on the Cross.

SCHOOL UNIFORM

The spirit of our uniform is to give us a modest but neat, gentlemanly image. Here at Wah Yan, we are trying our best to learn and are proud to present ourselves as young gentlemen and future leaders to our fellow schoolmates and community members. We do not need exaggeration, ostentation or fashion to identify ourselves. Our students wear to school a white shirt, dark grey trousers, a school tie and our classic blazer in ‘Wah Yan Blue’.

SCHOOL TIE

Our iconic school tie dates back to the mid-50s when schools were beginning to design their own ties. Most designs featured stripes and a badge, which were not exactly creative. Mr. James Yip (‘58), then a student at Wah Yan, broke the norm by incorporating our school badge into his timeless design in such a way that its features are instantly recognisable (i.e. the stars and the Cross in a deep blue). The emphatic pattern reminds us to imitate Jesus Christ by carrying our Cross in our daily lives. Till this day, our school tie remains one of the most unmistakable in Hong Kong. Perhaps even more iconic than its design, however, is the fact that our school tie was actually designed by a student. It embodies a bold, innovative Wah Yan spirit so well, that even it is not necessary to wear it during summer, most do anyway.

Wah Yan History

1919
1919

1919

1919

Wah Yan College was founded at 60 Hollywood Road, Hong Kong on 16th December 1919 by Mr. Tsui Yan Sau, Peter. There were 4 students on the first day.

1921
1921

1921

1921

The College moved to 2 Robinson Road with 300 students.

1922
1922

1922

On 1st October, Wah Yan became the first Grant-In-Aid school founded and managed by a Chinese. 

1924
1924

1924

A branch school was opened at Portland Street, Kowloon. This would later become Wah Yan College, Kowloon.

1928
1928

1928

1928

The Kowloon branch moved to Nelson Street, Kowloon. The number of boys on the roll reached 800, which saw the College becoming the biggest school in Hong Kong.

1932
1932

1932

1932

The College was transferred to the care of the Jesuit Fathers on 31st December with Rev. Fr. R.W. Gallagher, S.J. as the first Rector.

1941
1941

1941

1941

A branch school was opened on 8th September at Austin Road, Kowloon. Wah Yan College was closed on 9th December due to the Japanese invasion. The premises of the College were used as living quarters for refugees during the war.

1942
1942

1942

1942

During the war, the College was run under the name of ‘Wah Yan Chong Hok’.

1945
1945

1945

Wah Yan reopened on 10th September at Robinson Road, Hong Kong.

1946
1946

1946

1946

The branch school at Nelson Street, Kowloon was reopened.

1952
1952

1952

1952

Wah Yan College, Kowloon moved to 56 Waterloo Road, Kowloon.

1955
1955

1955

1955

Wah Yan College, Hong Kong moved to 281 Queen’s Road East, Hong Kong on 27th September. The campus was formally opened by Sir Alexander Grantham, then Governor of Hong Kong.

1971
1971

1971

1971

The Society of Jesus assumed responsibility for managing Pun U Association Wah Yan Primary School.

1987
1987

1987

1987

The Gordon Wu Hall was officially opened on 12th April. It was named after our alumnus, Sir Gordon Wu Ying-sheung, who donated it. In the same year, Lo Chun Kai, a Wahyanite, became the first-ever “10 A’s” student (commonly known as 十優狀元) in the H.K.C.E.E. examination.

1992
1992

1992

1992

On 8th May, a landslide occurred on the slope overlooking Kennedy Road due to heavy rainfall. In the same year, three Wahyanites achieved “10 A’s” in the H.K.C.E.E. examination.

1993
1993

1993

1993

The Wah Yan Archives were officially opened. Six classrooms were demolished because of the slope problems.

1994
1994

1994

1994

Wah Yan celebrated our 75th Anniversary. Lord Patten, then Governor of Hong Kong, officiated at the opening ceremony of the Open Day on 25th November. The Foundation Dinner was held at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre on 28th November, with more than 1000 guests participating.

1995
1995

1995

1995

The Society of Jesus announced the retirement of Fr. J. C. Coghlan, S.J. in September. Mr. Tam Siu Ping, George was appointed the Principal. He was the first Chinese principal since the Jesuit takeover in 1933.

1996
1996

1996

1996

The college welcomed our first exchange student from Italy.

1998
1998

1998

1998

The start of the 80th Anniversary programme & opening the 6-classroom block took place on 22nd December. All classrooms and special rooms were installed with air conditioners. Cultural exchange programmes to Mainland China began.

1999
1999

1999

1999

The college began to build its IT infrastructure.

2001
2001

2001

2001

The first Wah Yan Family Day was held at the College on 7th January. Over two thousand students and alumni took part with their families.

2003
2003

2003

2003

The School Development Project officially started on 25th May, with Phases I & II scheduled to be finished by December 2004. The Art Exhibition and Joint Wah Yan Oldies Concert were held on 17th December.

2004
2004

2004

2004

The College celebrated our 85th Anniversary. Over 2000 Fathers, teachers and students attended the Joint Thanksgiving Mass at Wah Yan College, Kowloon on 15th November and the Grand Reunion Dinner was held on the same day. The Wah Yan One Family Foundation was set up.

2006
2006

2006

2006

Sir Tsang Yam Kuen, Donald, alumnus and then Chief Executive of Hong Kong, officiated at the opening ceremony of the New Annex on 21st January. The Jesuit Jubilee Thanksgiving Mass was held on 7th April at Queen’s Elizabeth Stadium.

2007
2007

7th February

7th February

Fr. Stephen Chow, S.J. was appointed as the College Supervisor. The Wah Yan Dramatic Society celebrated its 60th anniversary and presented scenes from the Cantonese Opera in English on 7th February at the Cultural Centre.

2007

7th October

7th October

On 7th October, over 2,500 participants attended the Wah Yan One Family Walkathon from Wah Yan Kowloon to Wah Yan Hong Kong.

2010
2010

2010

The New Annex was renamed as Francis H.B. Wong Teaching Building.

2011
2011

2011

2011

The redevelopment of the School Hall commenced in July.

2012
2012

2012

The School Hall, in use since 1955, was demolished for redevelopment.

2013
2013

2013

Mr Tam Siu Ping, George retired as Principal in August and Dr. So Ying Lun took office as the 15th Principal in October the same year.

2014
2014

2014

2014

The New Hall Complex, comprising the new multi-purpose School Hall as well as additional function rooms and classrooms, was blessed. It was named Wu Jieh Yee Building, and was opened for use in September. The School Hall itself was named 邱元德堂.

2015
2015

The Jesuit Education Forum

The Jesuit Education Forum

The first ever Jesuit Education Forum with three international keynote speakers and six other local breakout session speakers was held at the College. The two Wah Yan Colleges jointly organized it as one of the key celebratory programmes of the Anniversary Year of the two Schools.

2015

The Homecoming Concert

The Homecoming Concert

The Anniversary Year was concluded with a Homecoming Concert held at the Hong Kong Coliseum in front of an audience of over 7000.

2019
2019

2019

2019

Dr. So Ying Lun retired as Principal in August and Dr. Davis Chan took office as the 16th Principal in September the same year.

The College celebrated its centenary in this academic year. The College produced its first musical drama “Legacy” as a kick-off to the celebration. Unfortunately, due to various unfavourable circumstances in Hong Kong, all other celebratory events had to be either cancelled or postponed.

2020
2020

2020

2020

To respond to society’s needs in the pandemic of COVID-19, the two Wah Yans initiated the medical face mask donation campaign in late January. Eventually, the College succeeded in collecting more than 20,000 medical masks from our students, parents, and alumni, and donating them to those in need.

Academically, a Wahyanite, Samson Hung attained 5** in all seven subjects he sat for, becoming our latest “Straight-A Student” (commonly called 狀元 in Chinese), which was the first since the beginning of the HKDSE era.

FUN FACTS

Do you know …

  1. Fr. Martin Cryan, S.J. was the designer of our present laboratories. His design was so good that the Education department took it for reference and many other schools used it as blueprints for their own laboratories.
  2. There was once a Free Night School with about 20 Wahyanite volunteers providing sports and other school activities for less privileged children in September 1939.
  3. The Poor Boys’ Club opened for street children under the direction of Fr. J. Howatson S.J. later blossomed into the Boys’ and Girls’ Clubs Association in 1952.
  4. A stray cat at the campus in 1993 has aroused teachers and students’ awareness of stray cats and inspired the formation of Wah Yan Cats.
  5. Mrs. Julia Baron was the author of the Way of the Cross Mural Decoration in our Chapel. She was also the author of the mosaic floor in St. John’s Cathedral.
  6. Both the first and last candidates receiving 10A results in the HKCEE are Wahyanites.
  7. After an exposure to Cambodia, James Mak and Francis Wong were inspired and started Project Little Dream, building schools in Cambodia.
  8. The current campus was designed by Professor R. Gordon Brown, who introduced the Faculty of Architecture to the University of Hong Kong. It is a modernist architecture taking simplicity as its theme.
  9. The science wing, following the general contour of the ground, runs off from the main block at an angle of 105° to the main school block. This variation from the rectangle ensures that the last bit of level ground is available for playground space. It also gives additional protection from the afternoon sun which would otherwise enter the classrooms in that wing soon after midday. Another advantage is that it gives additional storage space in the basement below the covered playground and cafeteria, which occupy the ground-level space of this wing.
  10. Each year, there is an election of 3 “Students of the Year” and finally a “Student Ambassador” who will go overseas to visit counterparts of WYPSA (HK) to broaden students’ horizon and maintain close relationship with Wahyanites all over the world.