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Extra-curriculum activities of Hinrich scholars!

 

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Top tags: scholars  study tour  China  Denmark  Europe  factory  journalism 

An unexpected first trip to Europe

Posted By Vephea Sok, Wednesday, August 09, 2017

Born in a tropical country like Cambodia, I didn’t know what living in a cool climate was like. The only snow I had seen was the one shown in movies. Most Cambodians rarely travel abroad, too. My parents, for instance, have never experienced going out of the country even once.

I honestly did not think I could or would – until I and 40 students and staff from the Hong Kong Baptist University took a trip to Prague and Vienna last winter.

Prague, a cultural and historical city, is known for its Prague Castle and the Charles Bridge, which connects the city to the Vltava River.

The tour fee was around $2,000, half of it covered by the Hinrich Foundation. After paying up, I had less than $500 for a nine-day European trip. However, I thought that I’d be able to manage it.

The trip started with us boarding a plane at Hong Kong and taking a 13-hour flight to Switzerland, where we traveled to Czech Republic.

When we got to Prague, it felt as if I was in another time. The palaces, parks, churches, hotels and restaurants embodied the city’s history and timeless architecture. There was the Prague Castle, the world’s largest castle, the Vltava River and Charles Bride, a 14th century stone bridge 518 meters long, where people passed by day and night, and I, luckily, with them.

As the temperature was normally below zero, the river in Vienna was frozen during winter in January.

In Prague was where I experienced my first opera, Don Giovanni, and interestingly, my first taste of fresh beer. The country is home to the original 16th century Budweiser beer, and for $15, I got to enjoy a fresh brew from the factory.

I wanted to stay longer, but we still had to travel for another six hours to Vienna. There, we had no tour guides and no one from the school to show us around. It was just us exploring Vienna.

It was Epiphany Holiday, a Christian feast day in Vienna. Most shops were closed and the streets were nearly empty and covered with snow. The temperature was below 15°C.

There was a tour that took us to the city hall, to the opera houses, the Hofburg Imperial Palace and other beautiful buildings in the city. I enjoyed my time at the Gloriette, a well-known coffeehouse inside the 17th Century Schonbrunn Palace, where I sipped a warm drink and enjoyed the view of Vienna.

My trip ended at the Vienna Central Cemetery, a 150-year-old graveyard where many famous people are buried (Beethoven among them).

The cemetery is located in the downtown of Vienna. Opened its gate in 1874, the grave is the burial place of many famous people including Beethoven.

It is believed that anyone who spots a deer while walking along the cemetery is bound to be lucky. I did not encounter a deer, but maybe next time. I think I’m already quite lucky to even have been there. 

Tags:  Europe  journalism  study tour 

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An unforgettable tour of a PCB factory in Shenzhen, China

Posted By Joshi Gabish, Wednesday, August 09, 2017

In December 2016, a colleague of mine asked me if I was available to attend a meeting the following month with CML Global Solutions, a provider of printed circuit board (PCB) sourcing solutions and a new partner of the Hinrich Foundation. At that time, I was not sure whether I should join because I was busy with several matters. I’m glad now that I decided to join the meeting.

On Jan. 18, 2017, together with CEO Kathryn Dioth, Program Director Alex Boome and other Hinrich Foundation team members, I visited the brand-new office of CML in Hung Hum, Hong Kong. My first impression when we entered the premises was WOW! It was one of the most elegant offices I have ever seen in my life.

Hinrich Foundation team members visit CML’s office in Hung Hom, Hong Kong.

The meeting with CML Managing Director Daniel Jacob and other representatives of the company was enlightening. It was the first time I learned about the existence and extensive use of printed circuit boards (PCBs) in our daily lives. The meeting aroused my curiosity about PCBs and led me to ask a lot of questions. My curiosity was satisfied to a large extent, but there were still some things I wanted to know and understand.

Luckily, I did not have to wait long for an opportunity to learn more about PCBs. In cooperation with CML, Hinrich Foundation scholars on March 28, 2017, visited one of CML’s suppliers, Gainbase, which is based in Shenzhen, China, to help them better understand how PCBs are produced and their importance in today’s world.

The day started with the Hinrich Foundation scholars meeting the CML representatives at the Shenzhen train station at 9 a.m. We were driven to Gainbase’s factory and then escorted to the meeting hall where the CML and the Gainbase teams briefed us about the CML’s mission, activities and the PCB manufacturing process.

Gainbase Manager Ivan Wong tells Hinrich Foundation scholars about PCBs.

As most of the scholars were learning about PCBs for the first time, they were very excited and curious about the manufacturing process and its use in various appliances. It was interesting to know that the functions of our electronic gadgets are largely dependent on the PCBs used and the method of producing electronic circuits.

CML, Gainbase and HF team members have lunch together.

A Q&A session followed the briefing, and then the team went to a nearby Chinese restaurant for lunch.

We toured the factory after lunch, accompanied by the factory manager and the CML team. Throughout the tour, the other scholars and I were fascinated with the high-tech machinery, skilled manpower and the level of quality awareness among the staff.

Gainbase Manager Ivan Wong explains PCB manufacturing technology to Hinrich Foundation scholars.

The tour also included a visit to the s.m.a.r.t. knowledge center, which enables fast and flexible production, testing and validation, and training and education.

Hinrich Foundation scholars visit the s.m.a.r.t. knowledge center.

After a day spent learning and understanding about PCBs and their importance, it was time for us to say good bye. The Hinrich Foundation scholars wholeheartedly thanked the CML and Gainbase representatives for organizing such an educational tour and accommodating the visit despite their busy schedule.

The experience has given me a greater understanding and appreciation of PCBs and the work that goes into making them. I again thank the Hinrich Foundation, CML and Gainbase for allowing us to tour the factor and expand our knowledge.

Tags:  China  factory  scholars 

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Living a Green Lifestyle in Denmark

Posted By Wanjing He, Wednesday, August 09, 2017

During my summer vacation on my third year of study, I went on a “green” journey to Sweden and Denmark to explore the concept of sustainability as integrated into global trade and our daily life. Overall it was a great experience that helped open our minds, inspired personal growth and developed trade leadership skills.

The experience was marvelous because it was an opportunity to learn. I traveled to Malmö, Sweden and Copenhagen, Denmark from May 26 to June 5, 2017. It was great to see eco-friendly buildings and the green lifestyle in both cities. More importantly, I saw how small environmental initiatives can lead to long-term sustainability. All thanks to the Hinrich Foundation for supporting scholars and developing future trade leaders.

Our study tour group enjoyed the clear blue sky and an amazing lunch made with the help of locals at a common house in Denmark.

Experience Sharing

I gained so many unforgettable memories after the tour. I am excited to share them and let people know how happy I am because of this opportunity.

We were divided into two groups, and I was elected leader of group one. Because of this role, I was able to enhance my understanding of team leadership and team spirit. One of our activities was to plant flowers and seedlings to make the environment greener. Different people performed different roles, such as loosening the dirt, ploughing out the weed, transporting new flowers and plants, planting and watering. I evaluated the tasks and my group members. I assigned people to their role according to their strengths and interests so that members would be happy and perform better. To us, our tasks did not seem like a chore at all. Instead, we saw our activity as a leisurely experience.

We also planted beautiful flowers. They were not simply flowers, though. They were about our friendship, caring for the environment and how small deeds leave a huge impact on many lives. We finished the whole process smoothly. Some of us even made a promise to come see the flowers again next year.

The flowers we planted represent our friendship and commitment to take care of the environment.

One of the memorable experiences was to prepare and have a lunch outdoor. All the food was organic and planted by the community. We picked vegetables, made sauces, and baked bread from scratch all by ourselves until it was perfect. The activity allowed us to enjoy nature, which we did not have the opportunity to do in Hong Kong. The surroundings were as beautiful as a garden. As our Danish guide said, gardening can bring so much joy in life. Indeed, people can have great fun just planting flowers and vegetables.

On this study tour I learned that, with a little green initiative, we can make a difference.

Tags:  Denmark  scholars  study tour 

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