Two successful applicants for the 2015/2016 Hutchison Chevening Scholarships, which allow applicants to study for one year of their master’s degree at a British university, hope to come back equipped with the skills and knowledge to help the city’s future.
Applications for the 2016/2017 Scholarships will be closed soon on November 3.
Mr Henry Lam (left) and Mr Gavin Wong (right) will study for one year for master’s degrees in the UK.
The 2015/2016 Hutchison Chevening Scholarships were granted to 19 future leaders from Hong Kong to pursue a one-year Master’s at a UK university. Mr Henry Lam and Mr Gavin Wong, two successful applicants, will study Sustainable Energy Technologies at University of Southampton and Carbon Management at University of Edinburgh respectively. They hope to come back transformed and able to influence policy to make Hong Kong a better place.
Mr Lam, 28, was a construction engineer for a mass transportation company. He felt inspired after working on a project on sustainable energy system which rerouted unused electricity for future use. “I saw that it saved energy for the entire transportation system and I realised how engineering and innovative technology can benefit society and even contribute to mankind,’ says Mr Lam.
The 25 year-old Mr Wong, on the other hand, worked in engineering consultancy. “During my years in consultation, I realised my ability to solve the most pressing problems is very limited,” says Mr Wong. “We are all facing the dire consequences of global warming but we as we develop we continue to ignore the environment. I really want to change that.”
Training the city’s leaders
The Hutchison Chevening Scholarships in Hong Kong are awarded to outstanding emerging leaders to pursue a one-year Master’s at any UK university. Full financial support along with the opportunity to become part of the highly regarded and influential Chevening global network, has made it especially attractive for aspiring future leaders.
Chevening is the UK government’s international awards scheme aimed at developing global leaders. Funded by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) and partner organisations. For the past 13 years, CK Hutchison (formerly known as Hutchison Whampoa Group) has donated over GBP 7.1 million (over HKD85 million) to the programme, sponsoring more than 730 scholars from Hong Kong and mainland China to study in the UK.
The scholarship programme provides a unique opportunity for future leaders, influencers, and decision-makers from all over the world to develop professionally and academically, network extensively, experience UK culture, and build lasting positive relationships with the UK.
Recipients of the scholarship are required to return to Hong Kong and work here for at least two years. Both Mr Lam and Mr Wong have indicated their intention to stay in Hong Kong and contribute to society.
“I hope I will come back having gained vision and knowledge on sustainable energy technologies with a new found global perspective, and just as importantly, a global network. I think all of these are important qualities of a leader,” says Mr Lam. He plans to organise professional groups in the industry and attract international scholars to influence the government and promote better energy policies.
Mr Wong hopes to learn from the British, and come back with an entire new mentality, “I hope to learn how others think. Hongkongers are often taught to assimilate, to blend in, but I feel like the British encourage their youth to question and be brave enough to be different. I really want to learn that kind of mindset.” He hopes to one day join the Government and push for environmentally friendly policies that are outside the box, as he feels current initiatives are lacking and the policies that exist remain vague and shortsighted. “One of the main reasons I applied for this was to leave my comfort zone and broaden my horizons,” says Mr Wong.
When asked for advice for those interested in applying for the 2016/2017 scholarship, Mr Wong believes those have ambitions in a certain area in Hong Kong and are ready to bear the challenges as a future leader should definitely apply, “show people how you will contribute to society and lead in the future.”
Mr Lam urges applicants to not be afraid to impress. “Don’t shy away from sharing the ideas you have, however big they might be. In my personal statement, I wrote, ‘We do not inherit the Earth from our Ancestors, we borrow it from our Children’, and I think that really helped with my application.”
The Scholarship will cover academic/programme fees, return economy travel and a living stipend. The arrival allowance is intended to cover expenses related to initial arrival in the UK. This may include set-up costs for housing, transport, books, stationary and suitable clothing (in cases of winter arrival). Maintenance allowance is calculated to cover your own basic expenses only, such as accommodation, meals, personal expenses, phone bill, daily travel and any required course resources.
Vist www.chevening.org/apply to apply now!
Applications are open until 3 November 2015.