This week's Brain Game: Vote now!

This week's Brain Game: Vote now!


Fuji Camera Brain Sept Prize_L
Photo: Fuji Camera
Every Thursday we ask our Brain Game contestants one interesting, thought-provoking or just plain quirky question. Then Young Post readers can choose to eliminate one until we have a winner. The ultimate Brain Game winner will receive a Fujifilm Instax mini 25 instant camera and two packs of Fujifilm instant film worth HK$1,750.

Who do you want to ELIMINATE? Vote below.

This round we asked: What new bachelor degree do you think local universities should offer?

Alex Chan, 16, La Salle College

Politics, Philosophy and Economics (PPE) is a popular degree at Oxford that combines study from three disciplines.

In Hong Kong, we do not have such a degree, which is quite disappointing. The programme would let us learn how to think critically and logically in areas of philosophy, politics and economics. Those skills are highly important to citizens.

In addition, a familiarity with philosophy can help us understand the reasons behind current trends in theories about economics and politics.

The programme would be very useful and having a degree in it would make any candidate quite attractive to prospective employers.

Vivian Li Wan-yi, 16, Wa Ying College

I think local universities should offer a bachelor degree in beauty. There are some beauty schools in Hong Kong, but a bachelor degree in cosmetics would be great for girls who want to learn professional make-up skills as well as understand the culture of beauty.

Most beauty schools don't teach much about the traditions of cosmetics. For girls who want to look pretty and stylish, a college degree course in beauty would be excellent. I think many girls would be interested in this new subject and would be keen to learn about the different theories of beauty.

We know very little about the history of beauty and cosmetics. Do you guys know when and where the first eyeliner appeared? I'm sure you don't.

Here's the answer: Even in ancient Egypt, people used eyeliner by making a dark black line around the eyes. And even men did it. In addition to making them look better, the dark lines helped shield their eyes from the glare of the sun.

These days, eyeliners are a must if you want to look pretty. But rather than just use cosmetics mindlessly, we should learn about the history of beauty products. So a bachelor degree in beauty would be a huge draw for girls.

Thomas Lee Ka-chun, 16, Sing Yin Secondary School

We have a thriving food industry, so we need a bachelor degree in cookery.

Hong Kong has long been hailed as a food paradise. Locals and visitors alike seek not only excellent food but also a great variety of it. To retain our title as the "Pearl of the Orient", we need experts in the culinary arts. A Bachelor of Cookery degree would be perfect for training new experts in the field.

Training to be a chef or cook is a lot harder than you may think. A degree course would arouse students' interest in different kinds of food and the culinary arts in general.

First, students would be taught about foreign cultures, to give them a solid foundation for a career in the food industry. They would then master the names and properties of common food ingredients in foreign countries and learn to use them in their cooking.

Students would also receive lessons and undergo training sessions to help them polish their skills in cooking different types of food.

How would it be decided whether a student has earned his or her degree? Easy. If they can prepare a dish that shows the values of a distinctly unique culture, they would be qualified.

A Bachelor of Cookery degree would be the highest honour for qualified chefs.

Nicholas Chu Weng-lam, 16, Sing Yin Secondary School

Do you know why Victoria Park was named after the Queen of England? Do you know how Hong Kong was given its name? A bachelor degree in toponymy would have the answers.

Students of toponymy study the names of places. They learn why and how the places were named. If you have been wondering about place names, you are a potential toponymist.

Many places in Hong Kong have unique names. Although the origins of many place names are now largely forgotten, it is still possible to tell why they were once named that way. For example, Diamond Hill's name suggests it is a grand place where you can expect to see diamonds everywhere. But sadly, that's not the case. There are a number of stories that explain where this strange name came from. The most popular one says the name Diamond Hill was translated wrongly. In the past, this area was a stone quarry. In Cantonese, the noun "diamond" shares the same word as the action of "drilling for rocks". Because of a mistranslation, people named the place after diamonds rather than a simple quarry.

There are many other place names in Hong Kong that are worth exploring. Toponymists-to-be, are you ready to earn your bachelor's degree in toponymy?


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