[Sponsored] Choosing the right college in the right city has to be the top priority for high school seniors keen to make the most of 2023. Hong Kong is clearly high on the list of  attractive destinations for international undergraduate students, with five universities in the world’s top 100.

HKUST students
Yihin Fong (left) has just started his four-year BBA at HKUST, whilst Joycelyn Ng (right) is a final year engineering student.

The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) is one of the top five, and the top choice for many high achieving young minds thanks to its enviable academic reputation and high graduate employment rate.

Yihin Fong is one such student. A Hong Kong native who completed high school in the UK, he obtained top grades in all five GCE A-level subjects but decided to return home to enrol on the HKUST Global Business programme.

“Compared to more rigid course structures in the UK, HKUST allows more flexibility in tailoring the best education experience for myself,” says Yihin, who also received three business programme offers from top universities in the UK and US.

Like many HKUST business students, he hopes to graduate with a double major, with Finance or Operations Management as his second major – though he’s also considering minoring in Environmental Science or Entrepreneurship.

HKUST students
His UK boarding school experience taught Yihin (fourth from the left in the second row) to learn independently and better prepared him for life at HKUST, which offers him the flexibility to craft a curriculum that best suits his academic and personal development needs.

Either of these options will be of enormous benefit to Yihin, who returned home to stay close to family, but whose Global Business study programme enables him to expand his horizons beyond Asia and Europe. He has to undertake at least one overseas exchange semester before graduation, and he already has California firmly in his sights.

“HKUST allows more flexibility in tailoring the best education experience for myself.”

undergraduate Yihin Fong

Closer to home, Yihin has already benefited from the HKUST internship programme, which remained at an 86 per cent high even during the pandemic. He only joined HKUST this autumn but has already completed a one-month stint at an Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) tech start-up founded by alumni. “Building a business from scratch sounded very interesting and I wanted to know how it’s done, hence this internship,” Yihin says. The HKUST Entrepreneurship Centre and the thriving start-up community on campus will definitely fulfil his entrepreneurial desires.

entrepreneurial spirit
The entrepreneurial spirit is strong at HKUST, Yihin having already had his first taste of start-up life in his very first semester with the university.

Yihin is going to gain another essential college experience in the spring semester – staying at HKUST’s seaside residential hall. He is looking forward eagerly to attending case competitions, joining the Case Analysis Team, and participating in sports and other student-led activities. “Doing a business degree would allow me to get into a wider range of industries and occupations,” Yihin believes, and making the most out of university would help him define his life goals.

Joycelyn Ng is another HKUST student with excellent grades and big ambitions. Born in the Netherlands to a Cantonese-speaking family, Joycelyn spent her teenage years in South Africa.

While she could have chosen to stay behind and continue her studies in Cape Town, the family relocation to Hong Kong gave her the opportunity to get to know her heritage and transfer to a world-leading engineering school. “[The University of] Cape Town taught me how to apply engineering theory,” Joycelyn explains. “HKUST is a more research focused university, which encouraged me to learn the mechanisms behind the theory and gave me more opportunities to do laboratory work.”

This ongoing commitment to student wellbeing and development was evident from the very beginning, the final year chemical engineering student receiving clear communications and support throughout the HKUST application process.

Joycelyn  HKUST
Joycelyn interned at Alt Farm, a 3D food printing start-up that is seeking sustainable solutions to produce food without harming animals and the environment.

Joycelyn explains that chemical engineering is a versatile and interdisciplinary field, enabling her to know how things are made. This fascination not only motivates her to focus on her studies and lab work but also helped her gain real-world experience. Interning as a research assistant at 3D food printing start-up Alt Farm sparked her interest in sustainable food production.

“I am able to meet people of different nationalities because of HKUST’s vastly diverse student body.”


She’s about to gain further exposure when she takes up a new role at Alt Farm arranged through the HKUST School of Engineering’s Co-op programme. The exciting opportunity echoes Joycelyn’s belief that Hong Kong offers far better career prospects, opening more doors for her now and in the future.

HKUST Joycelyn
“HKUST students are ambitious. We push each other to work hard and do our best,” says Joycelyn (right) who feels very much at home in HKUST’s diverse campus community that has the highest proportion of non-local students among universities in Hong Kong.

Joycelyn is a true global citizen who learned to live alongside peers from different socio-economic backgrounds and ethnicities while growing up in South Africa. She’s equally at home at HKUST, the world’s third most international university according to Times Higher Education. “I am able to meet people of different nationalities because of HKUST’s vastly diverse student body,” says Joycelyn who serves as the VP of Operations at the university’s International Student Association. “The ideas and perspectives from people of different backgrounds is incredibly useful in my personal development.”

Joycelyn HKUST
“Student society culture is more prominent in Hong Kong,” says HKUST International Student Association VP Joycelyn, who organised a pumpkin carving event to celebrate Halloween with fellow non-local students.

Her upbringing in South Africa, the knowledge she acquired from chemical engineering, and the internship all made Joycelyn highly aware of the environmental impact wrought by human activities and greenhouse gases. She pledges to do her part in protecting the environment, having already done an elective course in sustainability at HKUST and aiming to obtain a master’s degree in an environmentally related subject.

HKUST is clearly the ideal choice for students who want to attend a leading university and grow in a global community, offering many options at a fraction of the cost of similar top-ranked universities in Europe and North America. HKUST’s unmatched research environment, flourishing entrepreneurial ecosystem and strong ties with global employers make the university the logical choice for those who care about their career development and long-term prospects.

Don’t delay – the main round application for 2023 Admissions closes on 8 January for students holding international qualifications. Click here for admissions requirements and scholarship information.

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