Xu Xiaotong, a 2016 Master of Journalism graduate from the JMSC whose documentary explored the difficulties of Chinese students adjusting to life in Hong Kong, has been named as the overall winner of the 2016 Mick Deane Scholarship for Video Journalism.

The scholarship fund was established by Asia Pacific Vision (APV) in partnership with the JMSC to honour TV journalist Mick Deane who was killed while covering the Arab Spring in Egypt, August 2013. Winners exemplify the talent, skills and commitment to excellence in video journalism of the award’s namesake.

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Xu went paragliding as part of her internship in Nepal

Xu, from Guiyang, Guizhou Province in south-west China, won the award for the overall body of work that she has produced during her time at the JMSC.

‘I am excited to receive the scholarship! The award reminds me that video is really my love, and that there is always someone crazy about video, working hard on it, and even dying for it,’ Xu said. ‘Thanks for the encouragement. I will keep telling inspiring stories by video.’

Xu was the director of Out of Tunean exploration into the relationship between mainland Chinese and local students at HKU, through the eyes of some mainland musicians who said they often come to Hong Kong excited about the possibilities, but end up feeling alienated in a radically different culture. The documentary was produced as part of the Documentary Production course that she took during her MJ studies.

She also produced several video reports with fellow MJ Vicky Liang Siran during her internship in Nepal in December 2015. They included a video taken whilst paragliding above Pokhara, a clip looking at public transportation and a report from a trip to see the next morning’s Nepali Times coming hot off the printing press.

Judges praised Xu’s ‘overall body of work and commitment to video journalism’.

‘Xiaotong has a unique voice and style, and is a great storyteller,’ said Professor Keith Richburg, the JMSC’s incoming director. ‘She is committed to video, and also knows how to work collaboratively with others, and that makes her an ideal recipient of the second Mick Deane Award. I think she’s going to go very far.’

In addition to Xu, who will receive HK$10,000 as the overall winner of this year’s award, the following JMSC alumni were also given Honourable Mentions and have been awarded HK$1,000 each:

  • Bridgette Hall (MJ, 2016), Honourable Mention for Technical Proficiency, for documentaries ‘Rotting head – Death of an Island’ and ‘Tsz Shan Monastery’
  • Christine Yeung (MJ, 2016), Honourable Mention for Creativity for her documentary ‘Flashback’
  • Zhong Wenxin Ariel (MJ, 2016), Honourable Mention for Conflict Exploration for documentary Battle at Sangwoodgoon
  • Poo Yee Kai (MJ, 2016), Honourable Mention for Cultural Exploration for documentaries Blessed and Pang Jai
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Xu’s film ‘Out of Tune’ explores the relationship between mainland Chinese and local students at HKU

The Mick Deane scholarship is awarded annually on the basis of academic merit, and preference is given to students engaged in postgraduate studies.

Last year’s winner was Lukas Messmer, a Swiss national and 2015 JMSC MJ graduate who was coordinator of an award-winning student-produced documentary on Hong Kong’s pro-democracy protests, known as The Umbrella Movement, which aired on the MSNBC US cable television network.

The JMSC is responsible for shortlisting candidates for the consideration of the selection committee, which is composed of Mark Erder, APV’s co-founder, Ying Chan, Director of the JMSC, broadcast journalism veterans Kevin Sites and Rob McBride, and Keith Richburg. The committee also considers such issues as financial need, leadership and professional potential, and applicants’ extra-curricular activities when making the awards.

About Mick Deane:

Mick Deane was a veteran British cameraman who was killed by a sniper’s bullet at the age of 62 while covering protests in Egypt in 2013. Mick had previously worked in Hong Kong from 1988 to 1994 as ITN’s Asia cameraman. For the last 15 years of his life he was with Britain’s Sky News, based in the United States and London and, more recently, the Middle East.

‘Mick was the consummate television journalist. He knew his story and he knew what it took to get that,’ said Mark Erder, co-founder of APV (Asia Pacific Vision) and a friend of Deane’s. ‘But what separated him from the pack was his generosity. He was competitive but never had a problem sharing story or technical information with others.’

Ying Chan, Director of the JMSC, said the scholarship ‘is for that student who best exemplifies Mick’s spirit; somebody who wants to excel at broadcast journalism but is also generous by nature; one who shares information with others and has the potential to be a teacher and mentor.’

About Asia Pacific Vision (APV):

APV is a media and communications company specialising in video strategy, consultancy and production. Established in 1991, APV’s services include branded content, corporate video production, media consultancy, broadcast management, outside broadcast production, crew and equipment hire, and all phases of post-production. Headquartered in Hong Kong, APV has representation in Shanghai, Beijing, and Tokyo, with an extensive network of resources throughout the Asia-Pacific region.

For more information, please contact Mark Erder, (+852) 28272122, or mark.erder@apv.asia.

30 August 2016

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