Students from across Hong Kong came together at ARCH Education on Saturday for a drop-in session to learn more about the Young Laureate Award (YLA).
The session was filled with 19 students, from Primary Four to Form Four from both local and international schools. ARCH holds the free drop-in sessions every Saturday from 5-7pm to answer questions from potential applicants to the YLA.
The award is Hong Kong’s first national literacy competition, and will be judged by a panel of professors and admissions officers from University of Cambridge, University of Oxford, Columbia University and top boarding schools in the US and UK. The winners will receive a fully-funded scholarship to attend a summer programme in either the US or UK.
With the March 14 deadline for applications fast approaching, eager students are taking full advantage of the drop-in sessions and access to ARCH’s instructors.
“I have exams coming up soon and this project gives my mind a break from cramming and sets it free,” says one student from Saturday’s session.
“I love writing creative stories, but we don’t do it very often in English class,” adds another student. “With this [YLA] there’s no limit on what I can think!”
The sessions have been well-attended following a literacy workshop held at the end of January at SKH Tsang Shui Tim Secondary School in Sha Tin. The free two-hour workshop was conducted by eight ARCH instructors for 100 under-resourced students from 10 schools across the New Territories. The workshop helped students with English reading and comprehension skills, and encouraged group discussion and creativity.
“At first, some were a little shy and quiet, but after engaging in rigorous discussions where we challenged the ideas of the students, many opened up and contributed in a meaningful way to the class,” says Head of Critical Reading at ARCH Education, Daniel Bartholomew. “The skills were immediately put to good use.”