An 18-year-old student who is living with albinism has shown to all and sundry that physical disabilities should not deter anyone from pursuing their dreams.
Eli Tang Lai-ming, who has just graduated from CCC Ming Kei College in Tai Kok Tsui, passed this year’s Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education Examination (HKDSE) with flying colors.
She scored 5*, the second-best mark, in Chinese Language and Economics and got 5 in four other subjects, according to the results announced on Wednesday by the Hong Kong Examinations and Assessment Authority.
Tang has been nearly blind since childhood as a result of living with albinism, a congenital disorder characterized by the complete or partial absence of pigment in the skin, hair and eyes.
But her condition has never deterred her from reaching for the stars. She said she has never wavered in her belief that diligence and hard work will be amply rewarded.
What a disabled person really needs is not overzealous attention and care but trust and respect, Tang told the Hong Kong Economic Journal in an interview.
Because of her condition, Tang was sent to study at Ebenezer School & Home for the Visually Impaired for primary education.
She later transferred to CCC Ming Kei College, where she has been studying since Secondary Two. She said she felt tremendous pressure as she tried to adapt to a regular school environment, but she persisted.
Although it was difficult, she found ways to cope with the reality of living with albinism. She kept her own pace and, powered by her determination, she soon achieved all her study goals.
Aside from her own perseverance, Tang also attributed her HKDSE success to the support given by her teachers and classmates.
She is also grateful to members of her own family, who have never given up on her and treated her like a normal person.
Now looking forward to her first year at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology in September, Tang said she wants to major in quantitative finance.
Her dream is to establish a fund for social enterprise and scientific research.
She advised students facing challenges similar to hers to never be discouraged by their situation in life because they can achieve what normal people can, and even greater things, as long as they believe in themselves and work hard.
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