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JMSC Alumni Working as Bilingual Reporters in Hong Kong

Three JMSC alumni are working as multilingual reporters at Hong Kong’s leading commercial television station, TVB.

TVB broadcasts in Cantonese, Mandarin and English on its channels TVB Jade and TVB Pearl. It has developed the practice of multilingual reporting over the last few years.

Ng Yuk-hang reporting for TVB

Ng Yuk-hang graduated with a Bachelor of Journalism degree from the JMSC in 2008, Elmy Lung, graduated with a Master of Journalism degree the same year, and Andrew Lau graduated with a Master of Journalism degree in  2010. All three are now doing on-air work in both Chinese and English.

“It’s very exciting as TV news requires speed, accuracy and extreme conciseness,” Ng said of her new job at TVB.

“Being a bilingual reporter means that I get to fully utilise my competency in both languages. Even after the handover, Hong Kong is still a very cosmopolitan city where English skills are very much emphasised. There’s still a considerable percentage of the population that only understands English. Being bilingual means that one can reach out to different segments of society and communicate with them at ease.”

Ng, who is from Hong Kong, became a reporter for Hong Kong’s main English-language newspaper, the South China Morning Post after she graduated from the JMSC. She then completed a master’s degree in History at Oxford University before moving to TVB.

Andrew Lau reporting for TVB

Lau, also a Hong Konger, worked at Now TV as a finance reporter before applying for his current job at TVB. He reports and reads voice-overs in English, Mandarin and Cantonese on both TVB Pearl and Jade and anchors in Cantonese on Jade.

“When I started, there was no such thing as a bilingual reporter,” said Lau. “Taking into account my experience abroad and my education background, my boss decided to give it a try, and the bilingual arrangement works.”

“There is never an average day at work — cliche, I know,” he continued. “One day I was sent out on a boat to do live reports on the Lamma vessel collision incident, the next day I was anchoring the news in the studio. You learn something new every day and it’s almost like going to school all over again, except everything happens so fast and you’re required to think on your feet all the time.”Lau and Ng credited the JMSC with helping them get to where they are today.”My radio and TV classes at JMSC helped me become a better reporter,” said Lau. “I learned how to work under time pressure and most importantly, to write scripts that are shorter, simpler and sharper.”Ng said the JMSC “is the place where I realised the importance of being both local and international. The internships that the JMSC arranged were a foot-in-the-door to the world of journalism, and (an) exchange year at the University of Maryland allowed me to experience American journalism. All these reaffirmed my passion for journalism – it’s a way to contribute to Hong Kong, a city that I dearly love.”