FUNG SCHOLARS AUG FUNG SCHOLARS Fung 2020 FUNG SCHOLARS Scholars Network Newsletter FUNG SCHOLARS FUNG SCHOLARS FUNG SCHOLARS FUNG SCHOLARS FUNG SCHOLARS FUNG SCHOLARS FUNG SCHOLARS FUNG SCHOLARS FUNG SCHOLARS
Message From the Editor H
ello and welcome to the 17th edition of the Fung Scholars Network Newsletter! This edition features, as always, a range of articles from a group of past scholars touching on a range of topics. We hope you find something to interest you and as always feel free to reach out to any of the scholars (via Erin Li, erinlili@fungfoundation. org) if you'd like to know more. This issue is naturally under the shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic which has swept the world and upended our normal lives in myriad and unexpected ways. The editorial board and the Victor and William Fung Foundation team all hope that you and your families have remained safe and healthy throughout these events. It is a difficult time in many ways. Even when the pandemic recedes many expect that we will be entering a period of economic uncertainty that may remain with us for years to come. This edition carries several articles dealing with aspects of this disruption from a variety of angles; from both personal and professional perspectives.But it isn’t all
doom and gloom. As ever we have the latest updates from the foundation in Hong Kong, stories of travel and adventure, and an intriguing look into the recent research of Yong Xin Mo. This newsletter is always a fantastic glimpse into the experiences and lives of our fantastic network of scholars. It’s a fantastic privilege to act as editor-in-chief and to see first hand what amazing people this organisation has helped bring together. If you have an idea for an article that you would like to write, do remember to volunteer for the next edition of the newsletter. I would like to say a huge and heartfelt ‘thank you’ to the editorial team, designers, and writers who have all been so generous with their time. Without their efforts this newsletter wouldn’t be possible. Last but not least, we would all like to thank the Victor and William Fung Foundation, whose generosity has made all of this possible. Stanley Mitchell (FS 2015-16 University of Oxford)
Fung Scholars Table of Contents Fung Scholars T Fung Scholars 01 Scholars Fung 04 08 Scholars Fung 10 Fung 14 Scholars 17 Fung 20 Scholars 24 Fung Scholars 28 32 Fung Scholars 34 he Editorial Board would like to thank all the writers who have contributed to the diverse topics and opinions included in this newsletter. We would also like to add that the Editorial Board and the Victor and William Fung Foundation take no responsibility for the views expressed in this publication. Message From the Editor
London Life Under Lockdown: The Value of International Friendship
The Golden Legend : Hong Kong Canton Painted Porcelain
Journey to the West
TOKYO 2020 Olympics and COVID-19
Making remote working work
Finding a sense of belonging on the road
â&#x20AC;&#x153;Li & Fung Scholarshipâ&#x20AC;? has mysteriously connected my ancestry with the Barents-Euro Arctic peacebuilding region since 2009 Connecting with FS virtually Writers' and editors' bios
Scholars Fung Scholars Fung
Fung Scholars Network Newsletter
11 January 2020 – Hong Kong Chapter: Fung Scholars New Year Gathering Victor and William Fung Foundation
ith special thanks to Wincent Hung (FS 2016-17, Hong Kong Baptist University) for his generous venue support, 14 Hong Kong Fung Scholars joined the Fung Scholars New Year Gathering (2020 展望分享會暨團年飯 ) to brainstorm ideas for 2020 FS activities. These include hiking at Mount Parker( 柏架山 ) and Shing Mun Reservoir ( 城 門 水 塘 ), cultural tour to Lai Chi Woo ( 荔 枝 窩 ), volunteer activities, and various genres of workshops. Wincent also shared his journey in starting his own business. If you have any activities ideas to share, please feel free to contact Erin at email@example.com.
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Fung Scholars Online Sharing Sessions Victor and William Fung Foundation The Fung Scholars Community strives to keep our FS worldwide connected despite times of uncertainty during the pandemic. Initiated by Joscelin Yeung (FS14/15, Hong Kong Baptist University), 11 Fung Scholars Online Sharing Sessions were organized since February 2020 with about 140 FS participated. Date
aleon Fung (FS11/12, Chinese University of Hong Kong) Wincent Hung (FS06/07, Hong Kong Baptist University) Ikutei Sai, Yoyo (FS19, The University of Tokyo) aleon Fung (FS11/12, Chinese University of Hong Kong) Zheng Chenyu (FS09/10;11/12, Princeton University) Hayatora Hotta (FS19/20, The University of Tokyo) John Poon (FS16/17, Hong Kong Baptist University)
詩歌初體驗 (Introduction to Poetry)
21 Mar 4 Apr 11 Apr 12 Apr 12 Apr 25 Apr 26 Apr 3 May 9 May 16 May
Heidi Wong (FS15/16, Chinese University of Hong Kong Joscelin Yeung (FS14/15, Hong Kong Baptist University) Paulina Barszcz (FS15/16, University of Oxford) Nikita Hayward (FS14/15, University of Oxford)
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Introduction on Blockchain Technology Tokyo Olympic Games and COVID-19 學詩與演講 (How Writing Poetry Improves Your Public Speaking Ability) What it is like to be hotel quarantined after returning from abroad? Recent protests on scholarship policies of the government in Japan What does Circuit Breaker mean in Singapore? Plus How to Start Your YouTube Channel Now? The Keys to Successful Digital Transformation Do you think you know about Gender and Sex? Gender 101 Job Security Communication in the time of coronavirus and Book sharing: The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
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t feels very surreal to be writing this from central London, which is currently under lockdown. I remember seeing TV reports about life in Wuhan and across China throughout January and February and thinking that such a scenario would be unimaginable in the UK…
Myself (left) with Queenie, a fellow 2014 IYLP participant, in Xinjiekou 新街口 , Nanjing.
London Life Under Lockdown: The Value of International Friendship I had just returned from almost a year and a half of working as an editor in Nanjing when the first news about COVID-19 reached the West. People would tell me how lucky I was to have left China at the very beginning of January, but I actually really missed my friends there, and my apartment in San shan Street ( 三 山 街 ) near downtown Nanjing. I loved the sheer amount of history and culture in that city, and often spent my weekends in cafes around Nanjing University（南京大学）. Whilst in Nanjing I had been lucky enough to be put in contact with other Fung scholars and even meet some of them. Being in Nanjing also gave me the chance to reunite with another participant of Beijing Normal University’s 2014 International Youth Leadership Program (IYLP), for which I had received a Li & Fung scholarship to attend. It was fantastic to catch up with someone I’d met half a decade ago, when I spoke no Chinese and had never been to Asia before!
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The incredible experience of collaborating with Chinese students on a campus research project inspired me to return to China in 2016, where I spent a semester studying at Shandong Normal University （ 山 东 师 范 大 学 ）in Jinan. After that, I continued to study Chinese whenever I could, taking courses in Hanoi, Vietnam. I even found my way into a Confucius Classroom with other Fung scholars at the Asian University for Women (AUW), in Chittagong, Bangladesh, where I was a Junior Fellow at the end of 2017. I last wrote for the FS newsletter in early 2017, before travelling to Vietnam and Bangladesh, and before returning to China. It’s amazing to think how much my life (and the entire world) has changed since then, but several things have remained constant: international friendships and my desire to improve my Mandarin Chinese.
Since returning to the UK I have kept in contact with my colleagues across China. At the beginning of 2020 I was so worried that I would contact them constantly to check whether everyone was OK. By midMarch it was them messaging me to make sure that I was staying inside and taking the threat of COVID-19 seriously! Now it’s the memes and coping mechanisms that they send me that keep me motivated and strong. I am working remotely as an editor for a financial company based in Liverpool Street, central London, but my company also has offices in Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong. Now, the London and New York offices are taking tips from the other offices that have already gone through the worst of the pandemic. We have learnt how to keep our teams feeling united and connected through regular online catchups and scheduled chats.
Living through the COVID-19 pandemic reminds me of some lessons that I used to have with my Chinese tutor in Nanjing. She told me about her experience of being at school during the 2003 SARS epidemic, as she was teaching me vocabulary such as 感 染 (ganran, to infect) and 消 毒 (xiaodu, to disinfect). I had no idea then that those words would soon become so frequent in my online reading, featuring in virtually every news article these days. International collaboration is the key to success, especially during some of most crucial months of this pandemic. The friendships and connections that I’ve established over the past six years are currently propelling me forward, towards a brighter future. I anticipate returning to China again in the future, hopefully in better times.
Top: The backdrop for a Chinese singing competition, held in Chittagong, Bangladesh, 2017. Bottom: Interior scene from the 瞻园 mansion, Nanjing, 2019.
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Photo credit: Hong Kong Heritage Museum https://www.heritagemuseum.gov.hk/en_US/web/hm/ exhibitions/data/exid254.html#/nogo
orcelain, a material made from kaolin clay, is renowned for its fine grained, lustrous, and translucent features. It is also called “China” in English which reflects its land of origin. Richly painted porcelain wares have been regarded as “gems” from the eyes of foreigners. Hand painted porcelains were one of the main commodities exported in the last century of Hong Kong. It is my great pleasure to share with you my visit to the Hong Kong Decorated Porcelain Exhibition held by Ms Ruby Ip between February and June 2020 at Tsim Sha Tsui Eslite Spectrum Bookstore.
The Golden Legend: Hong Kong Canton Painted Porcelain Ying Ng
The History Of Painted Porcelain in Hong Kong “Canton decorated porcelain can be dated back to the mid-Qing dynasty. The art of painted porcelain originates from Jingdezhen in Jiangxi Province, which is far away from Guangzhou port — the sole legal trading port in China at that time. To reduce costs and turnaround time, merchants recruited masters from Jingdezhen to teach local painters in Guangzhou the painting techniques. This has evolved into a unique porcelain painting style — Guangcai ( 廣 彩 ), which stands for Canton Painted Porcelain of Woven Gold ,” Ip said. “Later, my husband’s grandfather established the first hand-painted porcelain factory — Kam Wah Lung Guangcai Porcelain” (former Yuet Tung China Works) in Hong Kong in 1928. My husband (Mr. Joseph Tso Chi Hung) is the thirdgeneration owner of this over 90-year-old business.“ Yuet Tung is also the last painted porcelain factory running in Hong Kong.
Ip explained the history of painted porcelain in Hong Kong
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What makes Hong Kong’s Guangcai Unique? “Some foreign customers requested customized pattern design for porcelain wares, such as combining family crest and western-styled motif with traditional Chinese ornaments,“Ip explained. Their ideas soon became an inspiration for “East meets West” style which showcases the distinct culture of Hong Kong. “Our porcelain wares are brighter and more vivid in colours because of the high-quality pigments imported from foreign countries." Believing that sharing is essential for the sustainable development of the industry, they communicate and share information of our pigment suppliers with other hand painted porcelain experts from mainland China.
Left: Yuet Tung China Works in Kowloon Bay. Right: Porcelain plate with Western family crest with traditional Chinese motifs incorporated.
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The Symbolic Motif of Hong Kong’s Guangcai One of the most famous motifs of Guangcai are pink rose buds, called “Canton Rose”. It requires the use of pink paint brush to create gradient effect in the petals without any outline. The rose is surrounded by birds and butterflies. Other traditional Guangcai motifs include “fighting roosters”, “longlife & rose”, “flying dragons” which hold different auspicious connotations. For over 90 years in Hong Kong, traditional Guangcai has evolved into “Gangcai” " 港彩 " (Painted Porcelain from Hong Kong) that symbolizes the fortitudinous, strong, and industrious spirits of Hong Kong. “Gangcai is simple in decoration. It uses less colours than Guangcai and its pattern combines both Western and Chinese elements,” Ip explained. “In 1975, Lady MacLehose, the wife of former Hong Kong governor Sir Murray MacLehose, brought a white porcelain tableware that contained an old English blue-flower pattern to our factory and requested us to reproduce a new set of tableware. Later this pattern became very popular among Japanese customers and was painted in iron oxide red colour. We named this pattern “Governor’s Flowers”.
Top: The Governor’s flowers pattern Bottom two: The brilliant gold paint between white space of floral design originatesfrom Germany and contains real gold.
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Left: Canton Rose medallion design, right: Fighting Roosters symbolizes fame and wealth. *Rooster symbolizesfame because the Cantonese pronunciation of rooster crows “gung ming” is the same as fame. Chinese cabbage symbolizeswealth because its Cantonese pronunciation “baak choi” is similar towealth “faat choi”.
The Way Forward Ip and her family members have always been pro-actively promoting intangible cultural heritage to the general public. “I organized this exhibition in Eslite to draw the public’s attention to this traditional craftsmanship. We have promotion channels such as Facebook and Instagram which are managed by our daughter Martina. I’m responsible for marketing and organizing various
porcelain exhibitions.,” Ip also organized Guancai painting workshops for individuals who are interested in learning this technique. “I’m so glad that there are more people coming to visit our factory in Kowloon Bay now! I hope our efforts will help preserve this unique craftsmanship — so that our future generations would still get to appreciate it.”
More information about Yuet Tung China Works: Address: Unit 1-3, 3/F, Kowloon Bay Industrial Centre, 15 Wang Hoi Road, Kowloon Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong Facebook: 粵東磁廠 Yuet Tung China Works Instagram: @yuettungchinaworks_official Special thanks to: Eslite Spectrum Tsim Sha Tsui Store Ms. Ruby Ip
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s I am sitting by the window of my dorm room, thinking about the journey that I took within this past academic year, I thought to myself, wow there are a lot to unpack. 2020 has been an unusual year for everyone so far but staying in Wales in the middle of the lockdown is totally out of my expectation. I should have been travelling around Europe, having picnic by the Eiffel Tower and having a summer love with a random stranger by now, yet I am stuck in my dorm room in Wales every day, thinking what I should cook for dinner. Well, or should I say, letâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s stop complaining and start counting our blessings in this difficult time. So, what have I done in the past academic year? 19th Sep, 2019, I took on a flight to London, all alone, and I still remember my mum cried and waved me goodbye at the departure lobby in the Hong Kong International Airport, that is a gesture saying how proud she is to have me as her son, after all, I am the first one in my family who flies over the Asian continent. The last month before I moved to the UK, I was way too excited that I could not even go to sleep, cause being able to study abroad has been my dream, I can still recall the first day at university, I swore to myself that I must join an exchange programme, and here I am.
Wales is a magical place, the language, the culture, how people are so passionate about dragons and of course, sheep. I have tried a lot of new things and met amazing people from all over the world. Though the weather in Wales did not seem to be welcoming in the first few months I came here, after all Wales is said to be one of the rainiest countries in the UK, I managed to make the most of the time here. A long walk down the beach and hiking in Mumbles are my favourite activities in Swansea, especially when the Summer breeze twirling up the waves in Caswell beach, sparkling lights rippling on the ocean, Swansea is the loveliest view in my mind. Here I enjoy the beautiful view, different learning environment, of course, and how British people party. During holidays, I tended to explore other countries in the UK, I am glad that I visited Scotland when the Winter snow started to fall. Christmas in Hong Kong isâ&#x20AC;Ś rather commercial, with big sales in shopping malls or fake Christmas trees in the city centre, I have never experienced the authentic Christmas vibe until I arrived at Edinburgh. The sound of bagpipes echoing in the town hall, childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s laughter from the Winter Wonderland, all the things that I have been dying to see and experience. December marked the third month of me being in the UK, and it was about time to miss my hometown. Fortunately, during this heartwarming festival, I was able to reunite my childhood friend from Hong Kong in Edinburgh, catch up with her and explore this exotic city together.
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Exchange programme is also about meeting new people, building a new social circle feels so strange to me, after all I have been staying in Hong Kong for so long, and I almost forgot what it is like to make new friends. Being in a new city, making friends in a second language, it is as if I am using a new identity but that also gave me the courage to try everything out. In the second semester, I enrolled in the Swansea University Dance Society Annual Performance, where I met friends, we shared the hardship of dancing and underwent the tough rehearsing week. “Are you going to join us next year?” was the most frequently asked question, but I always have to turn them down as I am leaving soon. One thing I hate about being an exchange student is the mixed feelings you get during the journey, especially when the returning date is approaching, it is as if that moment when you click your heels, saying “there’s no place like home”, but you know you are going to miss the companions and the yellow brick road in Oz. Well comparing Hong Kong to the gloomy Kansas in the movie might not be fair, but my journey is definitely as amazing as the journey to the Land of Oz.
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TOKYO 2020 Olympics and COVID-19
iving in Japan, it is obvious that the TOKYO 2020 Olympic Games has been one of the biggest events for most of the stakeholders since the previous Olympic games in Rio was over. The passion for TOKYO 2020 Olympic games got stronger when 2020 started. The promotion for TOKYO 2020 is everywhere in the city. The promotion was not only in the city, but it was also conducted on the labels of dietary products, because most of the big Japanese companies are â&#x20AC;&#x153;golden partnersâ&#x20AC;? with TOKYO2020. However, in January, the thread of COVID-19 came to Japan. As the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in Japan was found in January, the Japanese government conducted protection measures at ports and airports. Following the protection measures in ports and airports, measures shown in the images are conducted.
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In late March, IOC officially announced that TOKYO 2020 is postponed to 2021. In May, the IOC officially announced that if TOKYO 2020 cannot be held in 2021, the game will be cancelled. How does the announcement in May affect Japanese society as a whole? Here is my personal view regarding this question. First of all, Japanese government seems to be less sticking to TOKYO 2020 than in March. Japanese government now prioritizes the containment of COVID-19. People are also more aware of when they can go back to their normal life from lockdowns. As a whole, I feel like the official announcement regarding TOKYO 2020 in May had less impact on Japanese society than in March because the society as a whole cares more about how to deal with the COVID-19 than the TOKYO2020. Adding to that, in my personal view, I think Japanese society is getting more resilient to the unexpected crisis. In the middle of May, we had a series of middle-class earthquakes (Magnitude 3~4). I guess many Japanese people have thought the worst case, â&#x20AC;&#x153;what if the Nankai megathrust earthquake comes under the pandemic of COVID-19?â&#x20AC;? like I did. The posture of preparing for the worst is gradually penetrating the whole Japanese society.
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Official shop in S
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Making remote working work Stanley Mitchell
n a time of massive disruption, people across the world are rushing to try and make the new reality of home working, zoom meetings, and the mess of crossed wires and miscommunications that this is throwing up. Despite all of this it’s been a busy time working in technology innovation, and I’ve had a chance to see how several large companies from PepsiCo to Shell have been dealing with this situation. This piece is a collection of a few ideas and tricks that have come up in the last few months after seeing my clients and my own company switch to home and remote working.
After a while this can start to feel like an empty formality or even worse - a waste of time.
Mandatory lockdown chatter It might sometimes seem a little repetitive; you all dial in to a meeting and the first five to ten minutes is taken up time and time again by people comparing the current lockdown situation where they are.
The chance to talk (even briefly) about one another’s real difficulties and concerns is not only a great icebreaker but an opportunity to develop more lasting relationships. This applies most strongly to clients; who you have a much more formal
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It’s easy to miss, but these small personal conversations can be a huge opportunity to make a much more personal connection than most business calls usually allow. Under normal circumstances you might go through a dozen or more calls with a new client, or with a remote member of the same company. But in the current situation people feel understandably unsettled and eager to experience a more personal level of communication wherever possible.
relationship with and are unlikely to have extended contact with after a given project or assignment. However, it can also apply to other members of your own company, particularly in large international companies where there are plenty of colleagues out there who, under normal circumstances, you’d struggle to form any kind of relationship with. Nothing about this has to be forced or artificial; the chance to share a personal connection in a natural time of stress and disruption is a simple and powerful way to start the ball rolling with someone new. Video calls are always better Taking work calls in pyjamas, or lying on the sofa in jogging trousers and a tattered old T-shirt undeniably create a liberating feeling. However, it’s almost always better to turn your video on for meetings when it’s optional. It helps people to understand
you better because they can track your expression while you’re speaking, and encourages other callers to use their video too. Being able to see each other while talking is always a big advantage. It helps to minimise the amount of time you’ll spend talking with one another and see when someone’s on mute (as opposed to just sitting silently). Besides, it makes it possible to gauge the body language and mood of those you’re talking with much better. Before the lockdown, face to face meetings weren’t common in all industries, especially in consultancy where a large number of stakeholders are often dialling in. Now that everyone has been forced to adopt video capable conferencing software, so try to make the most of this chance to see and speak to so many people face to face!
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Take things at your own pace A major advantage of the current situation is the chance it has given for many of us to manage our time in a way that just wasn’t possible when in the office. For those of us who are used to a long commute, we suddenly find ourselves with extra hours in the day and for everyone the structure of the old 9-5 life has faded away. Making the most of this flexibility can reduce the stress of work and enable you to get a better idea of how you would like to work once things return to normal. The trap we all fear falling into is that of the slacker. Without the constant presence of colleagues and the constraints of the office schedule, the temptation is there to enjoy the comforts of home a little too much. The reverse is also true; I've heard many people complain that their work day has begun to stretch ever further into the evening as they struggle to draw a line during workday. Both these problems have a similar solution - in the absence of the
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office we have to begin to build our own schedule. This doesn’t have to be as uniform or restrictive as in the office but it is a great way to keep a distinct separation between working time and leisure. Apart from defining blocks of working time in the day, try to create a home office setup that either takes you into a different room from where you spend most of your day or, if you live in a single room, develop a ritual of setting up and packing away your working space to help create a feeling of separation. Take this opportunity to rethink how you want to approach your work as well. In the office we may feel drawn into a pattern of working to the clock; spending a pre allocated amount of time on a task. Without the boss or your coworkers looking over your shoulder, there’s no need to work like this from home. Trying to work in focussed bursts can help you to stay productive without distraction and you may even find yourself getting work done faster than in the office.
Prove your worth This is a difficult time for everyone, whether on an individual and a collective level. Businesses of both large and small are facing immense uncertainty. For everyone at work, particularly those senior to you, this uncertainty and general disruption weighs heavily. This is a perfect chance to demonstrate your own resilience, flexibility, and reliability as an employee, or as a business partner. Thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s no better time than when things are shaken up to push yourself and reach for new opportunities. Rather than just passively completing your normal work, why not try and reach a little higher? If you have time and motivation, take the initiative to ask your line manager, coworkers, or even someone in a totally different department if thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s anything you can do to help. A real problem with remote working, from an organisational perspective, is trying to manage and distribute work effectively. Some
people will inevitably feel they are being overwhelmed, or that certain capabilities have suddenly become a bottleneck in the process. Take the initiative to reach out and offer your help. This is a chance to build new working relationships and to gain experience in areas that might be quite different from those you work in dayto-day. Coming out of the pandemic with new skills and new contacts at work is never an outcome to be sniffed at!
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Finding a sense of belonging on the road
n 2006, I flew over the Pacific, arriving in rural Connecticut with two suitcases, weighing 100 pounds combined. As I struggled to carry them up to the 3rd floor of the dorm, my supervisors lent me a hand. At that moment, I felt at home.
Still, I found myself quite different from my classmates. I grew up on a college campus in Wuhu, China, a small city nestled along the Yangtze River. When classmates greeted me with “Hey, what’s up?”, I responded with the stiff phrases I had learned from my textbooks: “Fine, and you?”
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I could not understand half of the auditorium in the beginning. I had to drop levels of science and math classes. “Why did I torture myself to come to this unknown world?” I wrote in my diary. But the community at my high school embraced me, and my self-imposed box gradually opened up. Upon my arrival, Murong, another student from China, rode a scooter to my room and brought snacks from Chinatown. I remember chemistry teacher Dr. Kirby ’s smile, the extra help sessions that Ms. Perkins provided to catch up for English literature, and my classmates cheering for me at cross country meets. Fast forward a decade later: In October 2015, I found myself carrying two suitcases again, flying from Shenzhen to Los Angeles to work for a tech startup. Imagine yourself relocating to a mega city with over 60 neighborhoods, and having to search for a rental apartment and settle down right away. The initial loneliness that I experienced in high school returned, but only for a while. I was eager to explore the city and thought why not do that by staying at different people’s homes through Airbnb. It was not the first time that I embraced the idea of a homestay. Back in high school, the International Office matched me with a host family, Jean and Bill Gallup. Hosting has been part of their life: for over 30 years, they welcomed over 70 backpackers and international students. I was invited into their daily routines whether it was: making bread from scratch or bird watching. The Gallups taught me what it means to welcome strangers with a warm heart. Ever since, living with locals has been my preferred way to experience different cultures.
A quicksearch on the Airbnb website turned into a five-hour hour research project and a long wishlist that included a photographer’s house in the Venice Canals, a pilot’s all-vegetarian home in Santa Monica, a vintage camper off Abbot Kinney. My office was in Venice Beach. From there, I ventured out, living in 15 neighborhoods. From Monday to Thursday, I stayed in Airbnbs within a 15 minutes commute to work. On weekends, I explored from Pasadena to Lincoln Heights. For 48 hours, I stayed in different homes to experience the neighborhood and got to know the home owners by sharing a coffee or breakfast with them. The homes were more than a place to stay, they opened my eyes to alternative lifestyles. I stayed in a treehouse, a trailer, and a yurt, in locations that included the oceanfront, a rock, and the desert. I absorbed every detail about the places I stayed: fridge magnets, family portraits, and bookshelves, all of which reveals the personality of the host and from which I learned that home is an expression of the soul.
Left: with Mrs. Gallup, my host family from high school in front of a community bookshelf. Right: treehouse in Burlingame, California.
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In Lincoln Heights, I stayed at an indoor treehouse with fashion designer Isa. Upon arrival, I was greeted with mint tea from her garden and cookies from Chinatown. Her home is both her working studio and living loft. She brought me to an artist party that was a “burner community” with people who have been going to Burning Man for the past 10 to 15 years. Half a year later, she gifted me a ticket to Burning Man, and shared her survival guide to make my first experience smooth. At Burning Man, not only did I see 1000 types of living structures, from geodesic domes to RVs, I also met life mentors. Donovan is one of them. He has spent the last 15 years living in trailers around America and South America. The brief conversation with Donovan had a profound impact on me. He taught me that “ courage is to act in front of fear” and that “confidence is built on top of success.” Now every time I am afraid, Donovan’s words come to mind and give me strength.
travel kicked in, the guide went viral, and my Airbnb account accumulated enough credit to fund the initial months of my stays. In April 2016, when it was time to move to Silicon Valley for a dream job. I was heartbroken because I had fallen in love with Los Angeles. The kindness and sense of inclusion I experienced made me feel at home.. I can name that secret staircase in Echo Park, recount the gentrification of Rose Avenue, explain the obscure snacks in Erewhon market, and show you the flourishing art scene in Chinatown. This journey changed the way I live I treasure simple moments in life and become a minimalist, which means I’m down to one at a given week. At the same time, my understanding of “home” has deepened: Home is not only a place
Yet, some experiences were less positive. The 4 year old daughter of a recently divorced family, which I was not aware of before arrival, said: "Leave. You are not welcome here.” Looking back, I am thankful for those moments that did not go well. That is the beauty of life : ups and downs, empathy and conflict. I was experiencing a full spectrum of humanity. People often ask how I could afford it. I saved my salary for this life experiment. In addition, as a blogger in China, I had written a guide, “How to Use Airbnb,” with practical tips about how to pick neighborhoods and increase your acceptance rate as a foreign guest. I threw in my referral code. When summer With Sunshine a native american host with a 21 year old cat and dove
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to stay, it is also an extension of our soul and manifests who we are. Regardless of our race, language, or culture background, people who are curious and open minded will find each other. Yet, the Internet makes it so much faster. A Buddhist belief is that —— similar hearts attract ( 佛法及心法 ) . In 2017, after 606 days of my urban nomad experiment, I was facing a difficult choice of staying to work in Silicon Valley or going back to China to ramp up my own media brand and finish my dream of writing a book. I went back to visit my high school host family, the Gallups. On my journeys, I kept a journal with notes from hosts that I carried in my backpack everyday. Jean wrote in my notebook: “You have grown to be an interesting, positive, energetic and receptive young woman. Others writing in this
journal often speak of these qualities and your passions that have become infectious. Please follow those passions — they will lead you to a happy and rewarding life. ” On the Metro North ride from Wassaic to New York, I couldn’t help but tear up on this paragraph, and these words strengthened my courage to follow my heart. I moved back to China in October 2017 and spent another year and a half reflecting and writing 606 Days Without a Lease, which has more than 22,000 copies in circulation in China. The most rewarding part is the weekly notes and photos I receive from female Chinese travelers about the courage and strength they’ve gained. I feel grateful to the years of experience as a foreign student, where I learned the value of community. Since then, to me “home” is not just a house, but a place where we feel a sense of belonging. Now when people ask me, “Where will you live?” I say: “Where there are palm trees,” because to me palm trees carry my spirit. They are tall and bend with the wind, but they never fall. They represent resilience, strength, and grace.
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“Li & Fung Scholarship” has mysteriously connected my ancestry with the Barents-Euro Arctic peacebuilding region since 2009 Yong Xin (Alexandrovna) Mo My secondary and Bachelor historical education was in accordance with British A-level education system in Hong Kong SAR and my expertise was in Austria-GermanRomanov history in the 19th century. During my first year of undergraduate studies in History at Lingnan University (Canton Christian College in 1888) in Hong Kong, I was awarded the “Li & Fung Scholarship”,financing my studies undertaking Austrian history in Fachhochschule Kufstein Tirol in 2009. I secured an “A” in the Research Project related to the downfall of the Russian Czardom, ‘The Holy man who sinned-Rasputin’, with translation help by an exiled family of a Russified AltaicHungarian-Greek Christian priest heritage in the Romanov time in Siberia. After that, I have married the only son of that family and have worked in Hong Kong for several years. I have also received a certificate of Russian Language in Siberia.
In 2015, considering the new policy of EFTA network (Norway, Iceland, Lichtenstein and Switzerland) with Hong Kong SAR, I have undertaken an international program called ‘Diverse Arctic’ in the Northern (Arctic) Federal University in Arkhangelsk thanks to the Russian Quota Scholarship for foreigners and TromsøArkhangelsk bilateral program in UArctic in 2015-2017. In the program, I have an opportunity to improve my knowledge in English literature and Linguistics, Russian Studies, Norwegian Language in Tromsø. In the Eng lish Ling uistic g ro up in the Northern (Arctic) Federal University and University of Arctic Norway, I have got acquainted with Arctic/Nordic indigenous communities such as Scandinavians, Nenets-SaamiInuit-Pomors. In the summer of 2017, due to geopolitics between Ukraine and Russia and common economic consideration, we got separated and I got admitted
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to the University of Arctic Norway in TromsĂ¸ in MPhil in the Centre for Peace Studies. As the Centre is a partner of the Nordic Institute of Asian Studies (NiAS) and the Barents Cooperation, with my qualifications in Russian Far-East and in Hong Kong SAR, I have been offered internship opportunities in the Barents Institute and the NiAS for the deskwork of my MPhil research in 2019.
The very interesting and mysterious fact is that, before heading to NiAS supra-scholarship for the internship in 2019, the local communities of Arctic heritage are an exotic other and I was unable to relate them to anyone of my grandparents. In Kautokeino as part of my fieldworks in Kirkenes-Varangerbotn, being questioned by the NorwegianAmerican Saami-Inuit-Yupik scholars
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from Greenland of Denmark and Alaska Fairbank University in Alaska about if I am from indigenous groups, I was advised by them to take a saliva-based DNA test to understand human ethnicity. The DNA raw data demonstrated that part of my maternal haplogroup before 1930s belongs to the group with more than 50 concrete contemporary examples sharing the same one from Japan, the Republic of Korea, Austria, Bulgaria, Poland, Lithuania, Italy, Netherlands, Ukraine, Turkey, Kazakhstan and Russian federation. I was puzzled over our common maternal heritage from those regions and so my positionality has changed suddenly from being a historian to a member of the ethnic group named in the participating states in the Barents Euro-Arctic Cooperation.
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To explore further the admixture of the Northern and Eastern civilizations before the 1930s from my genetic D N A test, I attend ed the Wo rld Indigenous Educational Conference in the Saami University of College in Kautokeino, collected some oral narratives and visual presentations. On the first day of the conference, a local indigenous Saami professor has shared her ancestorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s migration history for coastal fishing by boats and trading with the Greek-Byzantine Orthodox Pomors through the coast of Barents Sea to Far-East since the 14h century until the outbreak of the Russian Revolution in 1914. To learn about the indigenous culture, I was also guided to visit their regional museum and noticed the preservation of their artefacts: boats for riverfishing along the coast in the Eastern
Finnmark at the Barents Sea to the Kola peninsula, the use of different colours to define different regional tribes in the Saami region, their practice of Joik playing shamanistic drum as ritual and the interaction with Evangelist Lutheran German priests in the 17th century. By examining the artefacts, lectures and folklores, they all remind me of my collection in Altai-Siberia: shamanistic clothing, Korean matryoshka (Buddhist monk), the use of eight banners in Imperial QingRomanov time, the use of drum in temple and the hybrid interaction with the Gothic Lutheran Church
and Greek Orthodox Church in Altai and Harbin. As such, I abduct that the Saami trading with the Eastern civilizations before the revolutionary time in 1914 could be a historical reason of my common maternal haplogroup with the indigenous ethnic groups in the South-Varanger in the Northern Norway and Siberian/Far-East regions since the 14th and 17th century. Without the Li & Fung Scholarship supporting the initial stage of my study overseas, I think I would not have discovered such a connection and it has become one of my research issues now.
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Connecting with Fung Scholars virtually Joscelin Yeung
We had to stay at home and could not organise any face-toface activities. Our plans for the first half of 2019 for the Hong Kong chapter had to be delayed. I miss meeting our lovely Fung Scholars and sharing ideas with them. What can I do to connect with our Fung Scholars even during the COVID-19 situation? As a Toastmaster, I have been joining numerous online meetings since the start of the pandemic as our meetings have all been moved online. As a trainer, I love sharing and learning othersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; insights. Hence, an idea came to my mind. Why not combine these two ideas and invite our Fung Scholars to share their expertise or thoughts with others in a virtual setting? That was how the concept of â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Fung Scholars Online Sharing Sessionâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; was born.
Thanks to all those who supported the initiative and made it possible. It was wonderful to meet our dear friends over the internet as well as exchanging our ideas on different topics. I was also delighted to know that Fung Scholars from different countries have participated in the initiative. I do hope that such sessions could foster exchange among Fung Scholars from different countries and that it may be a long-term initiative. My takeaway? If you have something that you wish to do, reach out to our Fung Scholars network and I am sure you will find the support you need. Looking forward to meeting you all in person after the pandemic.
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Editorial Board I was lucky enough to be chosen as one of the representatives of the University of Oxford for the 2016 International Leadership Programme in China, with the generous support of the Fung Scholarship Programme. I graduated with a Masterâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s in Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry, specialising in biological logic systems and completed my research under Jerome Bonnet at the CBS lab, Montpellier, France. Stanley Mitchell Editor-In-Chief (FS2015-16, University of Oxford)
Having worked in Tokyo and at the Ministry of Defence, I am now based between London and Cambridge working in innovation. I help to develop novel early stage technologies for international companies, while keeping up my interest in languages and history in my spare time.
Mavis received the Li & Fung Scholarship for a one-year exchange at The University of Liverpool during which she had the opportunity to study different subjects, explore towns in Britain, and work at a Chinese restaurant to enrich her overseas experience. She is trained in Psychology and a current Master candidate in Social Service Management.
Mavis Fan Editor (FS2013-14, University of Hong Kong)
Mavis has been working as an administrator in the Hong Kong higher education/nonprofit sector. At her own time, she teaches young pupils, provides writing guidance for job seekers, and does volunteering services. Mavis loves distance running, bread-making, and has an unknowing passion for burgers. She looks forward to meeting new FS buddies â&#x20AC;&#x201D; to join hands for social good and share happiness in foodie and sports missions.
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MPhil Student, UiT The Arctic University of Norway.
Yong Xin (Alexandrovna) Mo Writer (FS2008-09, Lingnan University)
I was a Bachelor of History (second-upper honour) at Lingnan University in 2010 with the project “The Role of Grigory Rasputin in the Collapse of Czarist Russia” and worked some years for Hong Kong SAR in civil service. In 2017, I got admitted to the University of Arctic Norway in Tromsø in MPhil in Peace Studies. http://nias.ku.dk/news?page=1
Nikita Hayward participated in Beijing Normal University’s International Youth Leadership Programme in 2014, funded by the Fung Scholarship. The amazing experience of collaborating with university students from around the world led her to return to China to study at Shandong Normal University (Jinan) in 2016. Nikita Hayward Writer (FS2014-15, University of Oxford)
Mostly recently Nikita has returned to the UK from Nanjing, where she spent almost a year and a half working as an editor for a major Chinese telecommunications company. She has passed HSK 3 and looks forward to improving her Chinese language skills.
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Vincent Yin Chun Leong Writer/ Editor/ Designer (FS2019-20, Hong Kong Baptist University)
Ying Ng Writer (F S2 0 1 4 -1 5, Th e H ong Kong Polytechnic University)
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Vincent is a Fung Scholar on exchange at Swansea University where he continued pursue his study in translation, the English language and explore the relationship between language and culture. With a PR background and as a former designer at the editorial board in his home university, Vincent is aspired to promote the dynamic flows of language and culture with the publish industry.
Ying Ng graduated from The Hong Kong Polytechnic University in the field of Fashion & Textiles in 2016. She is now working as a Research Assistant full-time alongside part-time modelling, and is going to study MBA Programme at London College of Fashion this year. Her work experience in the garment manufacturing field has enabled her to re-think what she can do to make a difference to the industry. She is interested in sustainable fashion, local culture, and hopes to make a difference by becoming a powerful voice on social media platforms.
Majoring International Relations in The University of Tokyo Bachelor of Arts 3rd year.
Ikutei Sai (Yoyo) Writer (FS2019-20, The University of Tokyo)
Tahira Tazreen Writer/ Editor (FS2014-15, Asian University for Women)
Ikutei participated in the LLIC (Learn, Live, and Intern in China) program held by The University of Hong Kong in 2019. Japanese is her mother tongue and she scored 80% in Hanyu Shuiping Kaoshi (Chinese Proficiency Test) 6th. Currently, she is studying German, and looking forward to improving her language skills.
Tahira is currently doing her masters in Development Studies at University of Dhaka, Bangladesh. She was born and brought up in Chattogram, the port city of Bangladesh. Tahira has been actively participating in various volunteer activities from the very beginning of her school life since she joined Girlsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Guide Association Bangladesh, and has continued doing that throughout her undergraduate life. Amidst the Corona crisis, Tahira is trying to take care of her mental health through knitting, drawing, and learning new languages.
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Joscelin Yeung Writer (FS2014-15, Hong Kong Baptist University)
Chenyu Zheng Writer (FS2011-12, Princeton University)
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Joscelin has been a Fung Scholar since 2014 and had her semester exchange in the University of Kent, United Kingdom. She holds a Bachelor degree in Government and International Studies from Hong Kong Baptist University and a MSc in Public Management and Governance from London School of Economics. She is now working in training and development in a local property developer. She is passionate about public speaking and believes in the power of speech. She is also committed to advocating for gender equality and enjoys doing yoga in her free time. Do connect with her on LinkedIn as she is also an avid fan of networking online and personal branding.
Chenyu Zheng is a writer, speaker and visual artist. She currently runs her own media studio, where she collaborates with conscious and sustainable lifestyle brands, such as Oatly, Manduka and Airbnb. Her blog "Apple Sister ( 苹 果 姐 姐 )" enjoys a readership of 300k+ followers in China. Ms. Zheng has published a popular travel book in China, 606 Days Without a Lease 《不租 房 的 606 天 》, about her experience living in different Airbnbs for 606 days around the world to explore different formats of home and ways of living. This exploration has also become a journey inward and inspired a new way of travel among Chinese millennials. Ms. Zheng graduated from Princeton University with a B.A. in Economics and a certificate in Environmental Studies. She enjoys yoga, coffee and painting animals.
Jing Zhang Editor (FS2019-20, Xiamen University)
Jing ZHANG is now an undergraduate at Xiamen University, majoring in Anthropology. She received Fung Scholarship in the fall of 2019 during her exchange at the University of Hong Kong and was lucky to attend the Fung Scholars Leadership Conference 2019 in Shanghai. She has been admitted by the Visiting Student Program 2020-2021 from two colleges of the Univerisity of Oxford. Whether she will go or not, she will keep exploring the world and volunteering in improving rural education in China.
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Fung Scholars Network Newsletter AUG 2020