This academic year, 20 JMSC students received scholarships to help them with their studies.
The scholarships were either full, half or quarter and came from a variety of donors including the South China Morning Post Wah Kiu Yat Po Scholarship Fund, the William F. Woo Memorial Journalism Education Fund, the Hong Kong University Graduate Association (HKUGA) Journalism Fund, the JMSC Overseas Talent Scholarship and the JMSC Journalist Scholarship.
Andrew Willis (MJ 2011) is a Canadian who studied international business as an undergraduate at Bishop’s University in Canada before coming to the JMSC.
Willis benefited from a JMSC Overseas Talent Scholarship which helped him with his tuition fees and living costs.
“My scholarship made things possible this year,” he said. “The JMSC has helped me become a better communicator. From my thought process to presentation, I feel much more equipped in expressing my ideas.”
“Every class had something very unique and universal to offer,” Willis continued. “Beyond the technical curriculum, I developed industry relevant know-how and best practice that I feel would benefit any career.”
Willis hopes to develop a career in broadcast news or corporate media strategy. He is now working as an intern at Thomson Reuters in public relations.
Willis thanked his sponsors: “I’d like to send a big ‘thank you’ to my scholarship donors. You’ve helped an essential industry in Asia develop in the right direction.”
Vincent Du (MJ 2011) is from mainland China. Prior to studying a Master of Journalism at the JMSC, he worked as a photojournalist and photo editor in China for six years for two newspapers: the Metro Express and the Bohai Morning Post. He continues to work as a freelance photographer for the global news agency, Reuters.
Du received an HKUGA Journalism Scholarship, the first person to receive such a scholarship, for which he is hugely grateful.
“The best thing for me during this academic year has been acquiring professional knowledge and building good friendships with MJs from other countries,” said Du. “I had worked for local newspapers for several years before I came to Hong Kong. I always believed it was necessary for me to have a break in my media career and go back to university to learn more.”
“Hong Kong is a dynamic place for the media industry. The JMSC has provided us not only with useful knowledge, but also internships and job opportunities in a variety of news organisations,” he continued. “Also, I have met lots of aspiring and enthusiastic MJ classmates during this year. It’s likely that I will collaborate with some MJ students in the near future to do projects together; the MJ network is important for all of us.”
Du cited Dr. Michael Coyne‘s Photojournalism course as particularly useful to him, as he is himself a photojournalist, and also Professor Ying Chan‘s Covering China course as a chance to cover China objectively. He was also keen to improve his English by taking the English Writing and Reporting course.
However, it was Nancy Tong‘s Documentary Production class that had the largest impact on Du. “Owing to her course, I started to love documentaries and plan to make documentary production my future career. I hope that it will be possible for me to find a job in the documentary industry or continue my career in the photojournalism arena in China,” he said.
Du will spend next year studying an MA in Screen Documentary at Goldsmiths College, the University of London, with the support of a Chevening Scholarship.
“I would like to thank Hong Kong University Graduates Association, especially Mr Ching Cheong, the donor of the scholarship,” said Du. “He has made great efforts to cover China and improve the freedom of expression and democracy in domestic China – he is a good model for journalism students. Following his professional example, I believe Chinese journalists have the responsibility to do more to improve the current journalism situation in China.”
Jennifer Jett (MJ 2011) received an SCMP Wah Kiu Yat Po Journalism Scholarship.
Prior to coming to Hong Kong, Jett, who is American, lived in Beijing, teaching English and working as a copy editor at a weekly English-language news magazine.
She said that the scholarship relieved some of the financial burden and made it an easier decision to attend graduate school.
“The best thing about my time at the JMSC has been the people I’ve met, both students and teachers,” said Jett. “At the JMSC, I’ve gained valuable multimedia skills as well as heard from guest speakers who are successful working journalists. In particular, I learned a lot from the three business journalism classes taught by Jeffrey Timmermans.”
Jett hopes to work reporting international news for a print or online publication. This summer, she is copy editing at the International Herald Tribune in Hong Kong.
“I hope scholarship donors continue to offer their generous support, because it really makes a difference,” she said.
Richard Schuster (MJ 2011) is Hungarian. Before coming to the JMSC, Schuster worked for seven years as a news reporter and morning anchor for Hungary’s market leading news programme, TV2 – The Facts. He also won an award for an independent documentary that he produced.
Schuster received a JMSC Overseas Talent Scholarship.
“The JMSC taught me skills, helped me to explore my motivation, introduced me to people and opened doors that I had never thought possible,” said Schuster.
“The scholarship offered me the chance to press the ‘refresh’ button on my professional life. I would simply not have been able to do this without it.”
Asked what has been the highlight of the year, he replied, “I will never forget that the JMSC gave me the opportunity to take part in the ABC News On Campus project which resulted in a news package that was aired with my voice-over on the American network, ABC.”
“The JMSC has offered me the guidance and industry knowledge one needs to make it through the doorway of media organisations,” he continued.
“With the help of the JMSC’s Internship Coordinator, Doug Meigs, I have just started an internship as a Research Assistant working with the Economist Intelligence Unit over the summer. I believe that the JMSC’s mix of skill based courses – writing, multimedia, video – and more theoretical courses, such as the Media Research class and taking part in Professor Fu King Wa‘s Social Media Research Project, helped me get this position.”