Medical careers beckon ESF leading lights

Local | Stella Wong 8 Jul 2019

A record-breaking 20 English Schools Foundation students achieved the top score in this year's International Baccalaureate exam, and seven of them plan to study medicine in Hong Kong.

They are among 34 Hong Kong students who attained a score of 45, which is four fewer than last year.

The top scorers from Hong Kong comprised about 16 percent of the 210 students that achieved the top score globally.

Among the 20 ESF top scorers, nine of them were from Sha Tin College, four from King George V School, three from Renaissance College, two from Island School, one from West Island School and one from Discovery College.

Charming Yeung, 18, a top scorer from King George V School, plans to study medicine after being inspired by her doctor.

Yeung recalled that she struggled with obesity when she was about 12. While receiving treatment at a hospital, she met a doctor who cared for her and changed her lifestyle by referring her to nutritionists, giving her some of his "secret diet plans" and telling her the right exercises to do.

"I think it was because he established this relationship between him and I, so I was able to fully and honestly tell him my condition and that really helped me," she said.

`Yeung also keeps the words of a professor in mind - "a good doctor cures his patients, a great doctor cares for his patients" - in the hope of forging relationships with patients, understanding their suffering and relating to them on an emotional level when she becomes a doctor.

Responding to the recent fugitive bill controversy, Yeung said doctors only have one goal, which is to cure all patients regardless of their political stance.

"As a doctor, once a person steps inside the hospital, they become a patient. No matter what political stances they have, we as doctors do not have to care about it at all," she said. Yeung also said doctors need to keep patients' privacy confidential.

Another top scorer, Sammie Lam from Sha Tin College, aims to study veterinary medicine at the University of Cambridge and plans to return to Hong Kong after.

Lam is interested in conducting research on infectious diseases that pass between animals and humans.

"I have two dogs at home and I have been riding horses since I was 10," she said.

"My life has always been surrounded by animals. Combining my love for science, there is no question that I ended up going into veterinary medicine."

Lam's schoolmate Alex Xia Kun-hao, who also achieved the top score, is planning to study computer science at the University of California, Los Angeles, due to its proximity to Silicon Valley.

Interested in artificial intelligence, Xia said he has his sights set on achieving his goal of working at Silicon Valley, which is home to many technological start-ups and global technology companies.

Meanwhile, four International Baccalaureate students from Diocesan Boys' School, one from Victoria Shanghai Academy, one from St Paul's Co-educational College and one from Canadian International School also achieved the top score.

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