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Keeping HK moving

October 30, 2016

Achieving ambition

Achieving ambition:  Long interested in the aviation industry, Joshua Lee (right) took part in the Maritime & Aviation Internship Network to work at an airline.

Clearer goals

Clearer goals:  Ronald Hung says the internship scheme has made it easier for him to gather information and make better internship choices.

Honing skills

Honing skills:  Cathay Pacific's Albert Wong says the internship scheme helps nurture young talent.

Academic support

Academic support:  University of Science & Technology senior lecturer Albert Wong (left) says the internship network encourages companies to employ more interns.

Trade and logistics has long been one of Hong Kong's four pillar industries, boosting the city's economic growth over the decades.

 

To ensure the continued development of these industries the Government invited operators in 2014 to participate in the Maritime & Aviation Internship Network by offering summer internships.

 

It gives young people early exposure to aviation and maritime services and encourages them to join the sectors after graduation.

 

The Maritime & Aviation Training Fund reimburses the operators up to $6,000 of an intern's pay for internship periods of up to three months.

 

This year 47 companies and 340 students joined the scheme.

 

Career engineering

Joshua Lee is a fourth-year electronic engineering student at the University of Science & Technology.

 

He took part in the Maritime & Aviation Internship Network over the summer and joined a local airline's internship programme.

 

"Right now I am working within the Engineering Department of Cathay Pacific and I am working with the reliability and development team," he said.

 

"I am doing a lot of data analysing because my team’s specific role is to look for trends within previous data and see whether we can make improvements in the long-term or medium-term future."

 

He has had an interest in the aviation industry since childhood and believes electronic engineering will continue to play an important role in the sector. He wants to use his knowledge to contribute to the industry after graduation.

 

Ready to ship

Ronald Hung studies international shipping and transport logistics at Polytechnic University. He worked as an intern in a container shipping and logistics service company over the summer.

 

He has dreamed of being a seaman since he was a child. Over the last three summers he joined three different shipping companies as an intern to learn more about the industry.

 

The Maritime & Aviation Internship Network has made it easier for him to gather information from different companies to compare the places on offer and make better internship choices.

 

"The Maritime & Aviation Training Fund is a very convenient platform for providing students with a list of internships on offer every year," he said.

 

"It has saved students' effort in searching for information about internship placement which is often incomplete and the list of internship on offer and disclosed by the fund is a well-integrated list of information that allows students to choose the internship they are most suitable in and make comparisons."

 

Nurturing talent

Cathay Pacific employed seven interns, including Joshua, under the scheme this year.

 

The airline’s General Manager People Albert Wong said the scheme helps nurture young talent for the industry.

 

"Traditionally in Hong Kong aviation awareness is very low. This programme successfully builds a platform for the young generation who are interested and passionate about aviation.

 

"They can come over through this platform to an employer like Cathay Pacific to have a chance to experience the aviation industry."

 

Ronald’s employer Orient Overseas Container Line provides a bridging programme for interns to re-enter the company after graduation.

 

Its Human Resources Corporate Administration Assistant General Manager Simmy Cheng said: "The intern has the priority to join our trainee programme because they have work experience in our company already and we have some assessment of their performance. We will make sure they are settled into our company in the right place.

 

"Through the training programme we understand whether they have the potential to be developed further. We target to make them assistant manager within three years."

 

Academics agree the network has a positive impact. Senior Lecturer at the University of Science & Technology Department of Electronic & Computer Engineering Albert Wong said the programme encourages aviation and maritime companies to employ more interns.

 

"For private companies, they are concerned about the fact the students are still students, they have not yet graduated, and their knowledge base and training have not yet been completed, so it may be a burden for a company to take in too many interns.

 

"But with this incentive scheme it becomes more attractive for companies to recruit our students. It is fantastic."



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