In the words of legendary 19th century oil magnate John D Rockefeller: “If you want to succeed you should strike out on new paths, rather than travel the worn paths of accepted success.” This quote is apt today, with Hong Kong, Asia and the world in a state of flux, there are few issues of more concern to families than children’s education and career paths. Straight into the labour force? Apprenticeship? University? Hong Kong, Mainland China or overseas university? Overseas working holiday trip? These questions and more are being batted across many dinner tables over Lunar New Year.And the answers could be found at the HKTDC Education & Careers Expo, organised by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC), which runs from 6 to 9 February this year at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre. As more and more careers opportunities emerge in innovation and technology fields, many of the events and exhibition stands will focus on tech.
Career theme days
Speaking at a press conference to announce details of the expo, Benjamin Chau, HKTDC Deputy Executive Director, said: “This year’s Education & Careers Expo features several thematic zones covering further education, continuing studies and job opportunities. It also highlights four career theme days, including the brand new Future Tech Talent Day and Aviation Day, along with the popular Electrical & Mechanical Day and Culinary Day which both return this year. Some of the exhibitors will provide the latest job market updates relating to popular industries such as healthcare, finance and engineering, while information on further education, continuing studies and working holidays will also be on offer. Visitors will get the chance to chart a new path forward based on their own preferences and needs.”
On the first day of the expo (6 February), the new Future Tech Talent Day, organised by the Office of the Government Chief Information Officer, will feature experts sharing insights on digital technology, STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education and the application of artificial intelligence in daily life and industrial development. Visitors and jobseekers update themselves on the latest market trends.
The Electrical & Mechanical Day (7 February) will feature engineers from companies such as CLP, Hong Kong Electric, Towngas and MTR Corporation who will explore industry potential and trends. On the third day of the expo (8 February), the Culinary Day, co-organised with the Chinese Culinary Institute and International Culinary Institute (the main picture shows a cooking session from last year’s expo), will provide cooking demonstration to visitors looking to learn more about prospects in the industry. Specialists from the food and beverage sector, including sommeliers, will be on hand to share their career experience. The last day of the expo (9 February) will feature the Aviation Day, supported by Airport Authority Hong Kong, where pilots will share their industry experiences and prospects.
On-the-spot job vacancies
Enlarged in scale in 2020, this year’s Recruitment Square will cooperate with various recruitment platforms to invite local companies such as Cathay Pacific Catering Services (HK) Limited, China Evergrande Group, Hang Lung Properties, Asia Airfreight Terminal Co Ltd, Pure International and Modern Beauty Salon to provide on-site recruitment, with some of them offering on-the-spot interviews. Various government departments and public organisations, including the West Kowloon Cultural District Authority and the Hong Kong Council for Testing and Certification, will also accept job applications on-site. More than 2,600 job opportunities will be offered during the expo.
The Youth Zone returns this year with information on continuing education and career planning for young people. Representatives from the Hong Kong Federation of Youth Groups will introduce popular courses such as the Certificate in Playgroup Tutor Training, Certificate in Veterinary Assistant Training and Certificate in eSports Management. Representatives from the Labour Department and various consulates will introduce the Working Holiday Scheme that allows young people to explore opportunities available overseas.
Four educational zones will be set up at the expo this year. The Tertiary Academy zone brings together universities and higher education institutions offering articulation opportunities, including Hong Kong Shue Yan University and the Hang Seng University of Hong Kong. The Vocational and Professional Education zone will feature the Vocational Training Council (VTC), Hong Kong Institute of Construction and Hong Kong Institution of Engineers, introducing a comprehensive range of pre-employment programmes. At the Continuing Education zone, Hong Kong language schools Wall Street English and EF Language will offer value-added programmes. Among the exhibitors in the Creative and Educational Support Services zone is Magazines International, which will introduce its latest multimedia online courses.
Education theme days will provide an in-depth introduction to studying in Mainland China (6 February), the United States (7 February), France (8 February) and Japan (9 February). Representatives from Huaqiao University, Jinan University, EducationUSA, CampusFrance and the Consulate-General of Japan in Hong Kong will host seminars highlighting the prerequisites for admission and application procedures, information on campus life and more. The International Exchange Village also returns to provide visitors with on-site consultation services for studying and working overseas. Participating consulates general and official education authorities include those from Austria, Argentina, Canada, Hungary, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Russia and the US.
On 6 February (Thursday), Nathan Lam and Yelo from entertainment cultural brand Manner will talk about their experience of becoming YouTubers and share some of the challenges of being online celebrities.
Star tutor Jayden Lam will share tips on tackling the Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education Chinese examination.
On 7 February (Friday), DJ Ah Jeng from Commercial Radio Hong Kong will share her career experience and offer practical tips on becoming a DJ.
While on 8 February (Saturday), Tong Shiu-sing, Senior Lecturer from the Department of Physics at the Chinese University of Hong Kong and guest host of the TVB programme Sidewalk Scientist, will share fascinating ways to understand physics.
Meanwhile, a series of seminars on working holidays will highlight the job opportunities and application requirements in Austria, France, Japan and Germany.
Finally on 9 February (Sunday), parenting education expert and famous DJ Blanche Tang will share her children’s experience studying abroad in the United Kingdom, including expenditure and challenges in their daily lives. Visitors looking to study in the UK should not miss this event.
Featuring two major sections – Careers and Education – the four-day fair will host 880 organisations representing more than 20 countries and regions, including educational institutions and consultants, professional associations, government departments, public organisations and private companies.