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Published on : Wednesday, July 27, 2016
Hong Kong based full-service airline, Hong Kong Airlines, has kicked off its “Embrace the World” Student Sponsorship Programme 2016/17 at a ceremony attended by Guests-of-Honour Mr. Yau Shing-mu, JP, Under Secretary for Transport and Housing and Professor Yuen-Tsang Woon Ki, Angelina, Vice President (Student and Global Affairs), The Hong Kong Polytechnic University. They were joined by Mr. Ben Wong Ching Ho, Chief Operating Officer of Hong Kong Airlines as well as representatives from over 60 local schools and non-governmental organisations. The winner of the “Best of the Best Student Award” who submitted an outstanding journal last year, was also present to share his experience of the programme. This year, in addition to primary and secondary schools, Hong Kong Airlines is extending the programme to universities and non-governmental organisations (“NGOs”) and sponsoring 1,100 air tickets to give more young people of different ages the opportunity to win a chance to broaden their horizons.
Hong Kong Airlines introduced its “Embrace the World” Student Sponsorship Programme in 2014 to reward students with outstanding achievements in academic or other aspects with free air tickets to give them the opportunity to travel and explore the world. The programme has enjoyed an overwhelming response since its launch and has sponsored 1,000 students on journeys around the world.
Mr. Ben Wong Ching Ho, Chief Operating Officer of Hong Kong Airlines said, “Rooted in the spirit of ‘New Generation, Free Thinking, Constant Reinvention’, Hong Kong Airlines’ ‘Embrace the World’ Student Sponsorship Programme is designed to encourage Hong Kong’s new generation to be bold in their thinking, to dream and to fly. This year, we are delighted to extend the programme to include universities and NGOs in order to benefit more young people. We are grateful for the invaluable support of tourism authorities of various regions and countries which provide participating students with free local accommodation and travel services. Going forward, Hong Kong Airlines will continue to contribute more resources for rolling out more programmes to benefit the young generation.”
Mr. Wong continued, “Hong Kong Airlines is committed to promoting the development of the local aviation industry. The Airline contributes to the society by organising a variety of initiatives that inspire the younger generation and support their aviation dreams. 2016 marks the important milestone of our 10th year of development and opens a new chapter in the growth of our business. The construction work of the Hong Kong Airlines Aviation Training Centre (HKAATC) began early this year. The completion of the HKAATC will help to nurture a new generation of aviation elite while spurring the growth of the industry. This investment echoes with the Company’s recent rapid development as the fleet continues to grow. We have also expanded our destination network with the addition of around 10 new routes in 2016. The passenger volume for the whole year is expected to increase by 25% year-on-year to 7 million.”
55 schools and organisations and over 1,000 students to benefit
The “Embrace the World” Student Sponsorship Programme rewards students with outstanding achievements in academic or other aspects with free air tickets. 2016 is the 10th anniversary of Hong Kong Airlines and to commemorate this important milestone, Hong Kong Airlines, for the first time, is including universities and NGOs in the Programme and in a short time, received over 200 applications. Due to the overwhelming response, Hong Kong Airlines has also decided to increase the number of winning schools and organisations from 50 to 55. As 20 sets of free air tickets are given to each of these winning schools/organisations, the move will mean an increase in sponsored air tickets from 1,000 sets to 1,100 sets. The travel destinations have also increased to include the new routes of Hong Kong Airlines, such as the Gold Coast and Cairns in Australia; Tokyo, Osaka and Okayama in Japan; Phnom Penh, Cambodia; Kuching, Malaysia and New Zealand for which is scheduled for have its inaugural flight in November.
The Programme also includes awards which recognise schools, organisations, teachers and students for excellent performance, offering even more opportunities to travel with Hong Kong Airlines for free to broaden participants’ horizons and to help them explore their potential. This year, the Programme received invaluable support from various tourism authorities including Taiwan Visitors Association Ltd, Tourism and Events Queensland and Tourism Authority of Thailand; as well as local tourism organisations: China Travel Service (HK) Ltd and Hong Kong Wing On Travel Service Ltd. sponsoring accommodation for students, free tickets to theme parks and travel services to enrich their tours. The venue for the kick-off ceremony was sponsored by the Hong Kong Polytechnic University, while refreshments were sponsored by Hung Fook Tong Group Holdings Limited.
Participating schools and non-governmental organisations are required to submit their proposals on or before 9 September 2016. Formulated in line with the theme of “New Generation”, “Free Thinking”, or “Constant Reinvention”, the proposals must outline an innovative extra-curricular activity for young people and describe the objectives, division method and judging criteria of the use of the 20 sets of free air tickets. No limitations to the format of the activities are imposed. However, as an airline with a strong corporate social responsibility and environmental protection agenda, Hong Kong Airlines encourages participating schools and organisations to include green elements in their proposals. The results of the Programme will be announced on 16 September 2016.
New awards introduced to recognise outstanding participants
The 1,100 young participants chosen for sponsorship will be required to submit their travel journals and to post their trip photos and/or videos on social media platforms on or before August 2017. 10 students will be awarded the “Best of the Best Student Award” for their distinguished journals and be given the chance to win a place in overseas exchange tours.
The Programme also features an “Outstanding School Award”, “Outstanding Teacher Award” and “Go Green Awards” jointly presented by Hong Kong Airlines and the Hong Kong Polytechnic University. Each winner in these categories will be given two sets of tickets to the Gold Coast, Australia, and Auckland, New Zealand.
The “Outstanding School Award” will be presented to the school that most successfully encourages its students to share their most exciting travel experiences. Hong Kong Airlines will review the entries and the school with the highest number of outstanding journals will be given the award. To compete for the “Outstanding Teacher Award”, schools and NGOs will be asked to submit reports on the Programme to share the highlights and results of their participation. Hong Kong Airlines and veteran educators will pick the teacher who best exemplifies the concept of “New Generation, Free Thinking and Constant Reinvention”, based on the reports. Finally, the “Go Green Award” is aimed at encouraging environmental protection. A panel comprising representatives from Hong Kong Airlines, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University and prominent environmental NGOs will pick the top five schools and NGOs with the highest engagement rate for their environmental sustainability activity for this Award.
Source:- Hong Kong Airlines