British Council in Hong Kong announces winners of the IELTS Prize 2018/19

Three local stars in Hong Kong awarded a total of HK$156,000

HONG KONG, Aug. 9, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Three outstanding students in Hong Kong who have excelled in their IELTS tests and shown a passion to contribute to society are the local winners of the British Council East Asia IELTS Prize 2018/2019.


Tracy, Tang Lok Yiu, aged 19, who is studying Bachelor of Veterinary Science (Hons) at the University of Queensland, Australia, was awarded first prize in Hong Kong. Johnny, Pun Chun Lai, aged 23, who will study Guildhall Artist Masters in Performance at Guildhall School of Music and Drama, UK, came runner-up, closely followed by Cindy, Sun Qiaolin, aged 18, who will study BA (Hons) Illustration and Visual Media at the University of the Arts London, UK.


Between them, the three motivated students share prize money up to HK$156,000 (c. GBP16,000) to help them realise their dreams of undergraduate or postgraduate study overseas at an English-speaking higher education institute that accepts IELTS as part of its admission requirements.


Since its launch in 2011, the British Council IELTS Prize has supported more than 270 students in East Asia to fulfill their aspirations of studying abroad. This year, the British Council interviewed over one hundred exceptional individuals for the Prize, with a total of 33 prize winners awarded across the East Asia region, which includes Hong Kong and Macau, Indonesia, Korea, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam. While it was a tough decision for the judges, the winners all demonstrated an outstanding level of academic commitment, alongside excellent communication skills and a desire to contribute what they learn through their studies to their local or overseas communities after graduation. They will also become British Council IELTS Ambassadors.


Hong Kong top prize winner Tracy, Tang Lok Yiu said:


"The selection process of the IELTS Prize has inspired me to reflect a lot on my own journey, especially of how continuously improving my English proficiency has been opening doors and leading to some wonderful opportunities and memories. Compared to other scholarships that I have applied for, the IELTS Prize resonates more with my own views and experiences, particularly around how I can make use of this opportunity as an ambassador, rather than focusing solely on academic merit."


The winner from Hong Kong went on to the regional East Asia finals of the Prize, but was pipped to the post by Regional Grand Prize winner Dillon Chew, aged 25 from Singapore, and two other runners-up. The three regional winners will share prize money of HK$ 603,200 (c. GBP61,000) to pursue higher education in their dream universities in the 2019/20 academic year. Dillon, who will use the Prize as an opportunity to study at the University of Cambridge, said that IELTS has opened the door for him to top quality education in the emerging field of Biotechnology.


Dillon Chew said:


"Extensive preparation for the IELTS test helped me stand out among applicants to the University of Cambridge. In addition, the financial support from the IELTS Prize has taken me one step closer to my dream".


Trish Thomson, British Council Regional Marketing Director for East Asia and one of the IELTS Prize judges, said:


"IELTS is the world's most popular high-stakes English proficiency test, with over 3.5 million tests taken in 2018. Through the British Council IELTS Prize, we are pleased to subsidise high-calibre individuals who demonstrate the potential to contribute to society after their studies".


The British Council provides IELTS test takers with a full range of IELTS services, including pre-test support, in-test arrangements and post-test services. This includes access to Road to IELTS, a collection of specially designed online preparation and practice materials for registered students. Test takers also benefit from easily accessible venues, flexibility when selecting test sessions to best suit their schedules, and the timely receipt of their Test Report Form.


To learn more about IELTS, please visit www.ieltsasia.org/hk/en/about-ielts
To learn more about British Council IELTS Prize, please visit www.ieltsasia.org/ieltsprize
To learn more about the British Council, please visit www.britishcouncil.hk/en


For more information, contact Shane Hou, Marketing Manager on +852-2913-5551 or shane.hou@britishcouncil.org


About International English Language Testing System (IELTS)
IELTS is the International English Language Testing System, the world's most popular English language proficiency test for higher education and global migration, with over 3.5 million tests taken in the last year. More than 10,000 organizations trust and accept IELTS as a secure, valid and reliable indicator of true-to-life ability to communicate in English for education, immigration and professional accreditation. IELTS is jointly owned by the British Council, IDP: IELTS Australia and Cambridge English Language Assessment.


Test takers are measured in listening, reading, writing and speaking. All tests are scored on a banded system from 1 (the lowest) through to 9 (the highest band). 


About the British Council IELTS Prize
The British Council IELTS Prize is awarded to high caliber individuals with the motivation to develop their career, and who demonstrate the potential to contribute to society what they have gained from their undergraduate or postgraduate study experience.


The Prize enables students to study any chosen course in an undergraduate or postgraduate programme of a higher institution that accepts IELTS as part of its admission requirements.


About the British Council 
The British Council is the UK's international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We work with over 100 countries in the fields of arts and culture, English language, education and civil society. Last year we reached over 75 million people directly and 758 million people overall including online, through broadcasts and publications. We make a positive contribution to the countries we work with - changing lives by creating opportunities, building connections and engendering trust. Founded in 1934 we are a UK charity governed by Royal Charter and a UK public body. We receive 15 per cent core funding grant from the UK government. The British Council has been working with Hong Kong since 1948. In 2018, we marked our 70th anniversary, celebrating 70 years of cultural relations and exchange between the UK and Hong Kong.

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