Among those honoured on Sunday was Fung Ying-ki, who became a wheelchair user at the age of 13 due to an illness.
The change in his life compelled him to take up fencing and he has represented Hong Kong in two Paralympics, winning five golds, one silver and one bronze. Now, he is studying for a master’s degree in physiotherapy in the hope of helping the less privileged.
Avon Lee Hang-chai, a police officer, became serious about magic in 2003 when he was beaten up and seriously injured while trying to stop a man who was smoking on a minibus.
The injury forced Lee to give up his dream of joining the Special Duties Unit. But during the three months he spent recovering, he remembered an interview he had read about an illusionist – and the magic began.
“There’s no secret to my success,” Lee said. “I believe that no matter how talented and lucky you are, if you don’t put the effort in, you’ll never achieve [your goals].”
Meanwhile, wig designer Alice Woon, who began working at 13 to help her struggling family, has donated more than 1,000 wigs to cancer patients through her charity. She used to create wigs for the late Canto-pop diva Anita Mui Yim-fong.
The other winners were childhood cancer specialist Frankie Cheng Wai-tsoi; visual arts teacher Rowena Cheung Po-man; pianist Shum Kin-wai; biomedical engineer Raymond Tong Kai-yu; and fashion designer Cecilia Yau Suet-ki.
Chinese University president Joseph Sung Jao-yiu, who was on the judging panel, explained that up to 10 people aged 18 to 40 could win the award, but this year the judges chose only eight.
“But it’s not like the situation where only two out of three applicants got a free-TV licence,” Sung said. “These eight winners are all outstanding in their fields.”
You might also like:
- The prestigious South China Morning Post Student of the Year competition is back! The SCMP/HKJC Student of the Year competition, which celebrated Hong Kong's top secondary school students, ran for 32 consecutive years from 1974 to 2006.