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Thirteen MJ students from a variety of countries have received scholarships for the 2011-2012 school year to help them with their studies at the JMSC.
The scholarships are either full, half or quarter and come from donors including the South China Morning Post-Wah Kiu Yat Po Scholarship Fund, the William F. Woo Memorial Journalism Education Fund, Frank Proctor of Muse Magazine, the Hong Kong University Graduate Association Journalism Fund and the JMSC Journalist Grant Scheme. In addition to raising capital for scholarships, the JMSC manages the funds that are awarded.
This year’s recipients include Sanday Chongo Kabange of Zambia, Connie Tse Cho Yi and Ellen Cheung Oi Lun of Hong Kong, Yu Xinyan from the mainland, and Paola Barisani of Italy.
Kabange worked as a media professional prior to coming to the JMSC.
He came to the JMSC to earn a Master of Journalism degree thanks to an SCMP Wah Kiu Yat Po Scholarship.
“This scholarship has enabled me participate in one of the most extensive and highly recognised journalism programmes worldwide,” he said.
“I doubt I would have managed to support myself to the end of the course if I had not been offered it. Therefore, it has contributed to re-shaping the course of my future and career.”
Kabange says he hopes to work in Hong Kong upon graduating and then return to Zambia to contribute to the development of the media in his native country.
Connie Tse came straight to the JMSC from her undergraduate studies in Comparative Literature and Politics at HKU.
She received a full scholarship thanks to Frank Proctor, founder and publisher of Muse Magazine.
“Here at the JMSC, I have met many talented people from China, Singapore, Germany, Canada, Africa and other parts of the world,” said Tse. “We’ve become good friends and we help each other to learn. The teachers are very supportive to the students and we are like a big family. All these things wouldn’t have been possible without the generous support of my donor.”
Tse hopes to work in video and multimedia journalism after she completes her master’s degree.
“The skills I have learned here are very practical: I can now film short videos, then edit and package them into complete news stories,” she said. “I am also learning to build websites and cover live stories online. These skills are an important asset to a young professional journalist in today’s digital era.”
Yu Xinyan came to the JMSC from Beijing Foreign Studies University. She received a JMSC Journalist Grant Scheme Scholarship.
“The scholarship made it possible for me to be here,” she said. “I’ve been exposed to a lot of hands-on courses, teaching me not only to write but also to shoot videos and take photos. I’ve always wanted to become a journalist with a multimedia background. The JMSC has helped me make my first step.”
Yu hopes to work for an English-language news agency in Beijing once she has graduated. She said she’s extremely grateful for the financial help and has been pleased with the course.
“So far, I have particularly enjoyed Health and Medicine Reporting and Literary Journalism because they have helped me to expand my vision and specialise in certain areas,” she said.
Paola Barisani holds a degree in Communications from the University of Milan and a master’s degree in Global Media and Post-national Communication from the School of Oriental and African Studies in London.
The Italian student lived and worked in Japan and Vietnam for two years between her studies in Europe. She then returned to Italy to work in the communications sector, at the same time freelancing for an Italian regional magazine and working as an editor at Digicult, a magazine that specialises in art, digital culture and society.
Barisani received an SCMP Wah Kiu Yat Po Scholarship. She interned at the Cambodian newspaper, the Phnom Penh Post over the winter break, which cemented her desire to become a reporter, either in print or broadcast, after she completes her master’s degree at the JMSC.
“HKU is a great place to study journalism,” she said. “I feel like I am learning a lot and gaining practical skills, which is what I missed in my previous MA and BA. It has also given me the opportunity to follow an internship in a dynamic part of the world that I had never been to before.”
“If I am one step closer to my professional goals it is thanks to my scholarship providers,” Barisani said.
“Their generosity has inspired me to help others and give back to the community. I hope one day I will be able to help students achieve their goal as just as they have helped me.”
Ellen Cheung Oi Lun is working as a research assistant while studying for her MJ.
Cheung came to the JMSC after her BA honors degree in English Studies at HKU. She has also benefitted from an SCMP Wah Kiu Yat Po Scholarship.
“I want to thank my scholarship providers for their generosity in helping me pursue this degree,” said Cheung. “Without their support I would not have completed half of the programme.”