22 May, 2023
17 : 21
Once an enthusiastic but quiet student at Yew Chung International School (YCIS) Hong Kong, Janice Lau has flourished as an accomplished architect and an associate at Populous, the architectural firm for Kai Tak Sports Park, Hong Kong’s new state-of-the-art, multipurpose sports complex. Janice, an alumna of the Class of 2008, credits her time at YCIS for shaping her into who she is today.
Janice fondly recalls her time in YCIS' tight-knit community, where she formed close friendships and discovered her passion for design. The school's diverse curriculum, from computer programming to music composition, allowed Janice to explore her interests and gain a deep understanding of the world. The multicultural environment also played a crucial role in her personal growth. "Life was simple but meaningful at YCIS. The school exposed me to so much, and provided a multicultural environment, which has been beneficial to me throughout my life," she said.
A turning point in Janice's life was a study trip to Beijing and Xian, where she first experienced the wonder of traveling to the Chinese mainland. This adventure broadened her perspective and ignited a passion for cultural exploration. "Traveling to the Chinese mainland at a young age definitely expanded my mindset and exposed me to cultural and architectural wonders," Janice noted.
As an architect, Janice plans, designs, and develops spaces for clients and future users, transforming ideas from paper into reality. Her love for creating spaces and problem-solving led her to architecture. She became captivated by its potential to improve lives through thoughtful designs that could enhance well-being, promote connectivity, and have a positive impact on how people live, work, and interact. She is grateful to Rocco Yim, the renowned architect, her early role model, who inspired her with his dedication to architecture. "Do what you love; love what you do," can best describe Mr Yim and his work. Janice has also embraced this philosophy during her career.
Kai Tak Sports Park, a complex and challenging project, holds a special place in Janice’s heart. Despite numerous constraints, she enjoys creating a space that will enrich the surrounding community and provide a hub for the people of Hong Kong. "Kai Tak Sports Park is one of the most challenging projects for me, and also the most interesting. It is a place that will indeed be used by Hong Kong people when it opens, after being vacant since the airport moved to Chek Lap Kok," Janice proudly said.
"Architecture is not an easy path, but go for it, if you’re sure you love it."
Janice wants to continue working on large-scale, social infrastructure projects and using her architectural skills to help the less fortunate. Despite the challenges, she encourages fellow alumni to pursue their passions for architecture. She emphasized that it is also essential to keep in contact with the alumni community, who can provide support, mentorship, and networking opportunities. Janice’s YCIS roots have undoubtedly played a crucial role in her success, offering a foundation of lifelong friendships, strong values, and a love for design that will continue to inspire her as an architect.