Monday 18 August 2014


Three Hong Kong students win British Council’s IELTS Scholarship to pursue their dreams of studying overseas
Top three students in the East Asia region each receive £25,000 scholarship

Studying overseas is a dream for many students in Hong Kong. With an aim to connect people with learning opportunities, the British Council launched the IELTS scholarship scheme in 2011 and, since then, it has supported 14 students to study at universities around the world, including the UK, USA and France. This year, three new scholars are being added to the list, and each received a scholarship valued at HK$33,000 during the award presentation ceremony at Kowloonbay International Trade and Exhibition Centre on Saturday 16 August 2014. To celebrate the 25th anniversary of IELTS, the British Council also awarded three students in the East Asia region with scholarships of £25,000 each; the students will be entering their dream universities overseas to pursue further education.

Myranda Lai Wun Chi, accepted by the Faculty of Law at the University of Cambridge for the BA (Honours) programme, has always wanted to study in the UK and experience its culture. She said, ‘The IELTS scholarship has aided the realisation of my long-held dream of studying in the UK by easing the way financially and recognising my achievements in English. I am happy to be given a chance to see Hong Kong objectively from a distance and gain a clearer picture of the role I aspire to upon my return. Most importantly, the IELTS scholarship has encouraged me to continue pursuing my dreams.’

Another IELTS scholar, Justin Cheng Ho Ching, who will attend the University of Southern California in the USA to study Computer Science, shared his thoughts. ‘This IELTS scholarship has encouraged me to seek a university education abroad. It is my dream to become a computer engineer and studying engineering in California will definitely equip me for my career. I am excited to meet students from all over the world and would like to thank the British Council for supporting me to realise my dream.’

The remaining scholar, Junice Tong Yik Yan, specifically commented on the wide international acceptance of IELTS, which allowed her flexibility regarding her further study plans. She will be studying English and Related Literature at the University of York in the UK.

‘As an international English proficiency test, IELTS has grown in popularity, with more than 2.2 million tests taken in 2013, and it is now recognised by 9,000 plus organisations, including universities, employers and immigration authorities worldwide’, said Greg Selby, Director of Examinations British Council, East Asia. ‘We are pleased that our wide international acceptance and the IELTS scholarship scheme are helping more students in East Asia to pursue further study in different parts of the world.’

This year marks the 25th anniversary of IELTS. To celebrate the occasion, the British Council extended the IELTS scholarship scheme to 10 cities across East Asia, awarding three regional scholarships to top scholars in the region. Two of the scholars will be pursuing further study in the UK. Sooyoun Kim from Korea is registered for the MA in Museum and Artefact Studies at Durham University and Wongsathorn Jiraphanvanich from Thailand will attend the University of Cambridge, studying for the MPhil and PhD in Chemical Engineering.

The third regional IELTS scholar, Thandar Aung from Myanmar, will be making her way to Germany and the Institute of Tropical Medicine and International Health of Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, where she will study for the MSc in International Health. With an ambition to contribute and lead the health sector reform process in her country, she said, ‘I would like to thank the British Council for the IELTS scholarship and I certainly believe that my master’s studies in International Health will equip me with the necessary knowledge and skills of the industry. I hope this scholarship scheme will continue to inspire many generations to come.’

As an IELTS official test centre, the British Council provides full support in preparing students to take IELTS examinations, including a 30-hour free online training programme for registered students as well as access to different preparation materials. Furthermore, test sessions are organised three times a month, giving students flexibility. For more details, please visit

Notes to Editor

About International English Language Testing System (IELTS)

IELTS is the International English Language Testing System, the world’s most popular English language proficiency test with two million tests taken in the last year. Over 9,000 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 British Council, IDP: IELTS Australia and Cambridge English Language Assessment.

About the test

Candidates are tested in listening, reading, writing and speaking. All tests are scored on a banded system from 1 (the lowest) through to 9 (the highest possible band score).

IELTS offers a choice of two versions, to serve both academic and non-academic purposes. IELTS Academic module measures English language proficiency needed for an academic, higher learning environment. The tasks and texts are accessible to all test-takers, irrespective of their subject focus. IELTS General Training module measures English language proficiency in a practical, everyday context. The tasks and texts reflect both workplace and social situations. The General Training module is suitable for immigration purposes to Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the United Kingdom.

About the British Council

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for educational opportunities and cultural relations. We create international opportunities for the people of the UK and other countries and build trust between them worldwide. 

We work in more than 100 countries and our 7,000 staff – including 2,000 teachers – work with thousands of professionals and policy makers and millions of young people every year by teaching English, sharing the Arts and delivering education and society programmes. In Hong Kong, we have been doing this since 1948, giving people opportunities to learn, share and connect worldwide.

We are a UK charity governed by Royal Charter. A core publically-funded grant-in-aid provides less than 25 per cent of our turnover, which last year was £781m. The rest of our revenues are earned from services which customers around the world pay for, through education and development contracts and from partnerships with public and private organisations. All our work is in pursuit of our charitable purpose and supports prosperity and security for the UK and globally.