January 2009 | By Su Cheng Harris-Simpson
The awards ceremony and dinner to honor the winners of the 2009 Committee of 100 Leadership Scholarships will be held March 26 in Beijing. The Leadership Scholarship Awards Program (LSAP) was initiated in 2005 with the aim of assisting high-achieving Chinese students reach their greatest potential. This year’s selection committee will award scholarships to 28 students from 14 universities across China, based upon academic excellence, demonstrated leadership abilities, and dedication to their communities.
This year, the ceremony features a new twist—a live contest allowing awardees to display their leadership skills and commitment to corporate social responsibility through their answers to questions from a panel of judges. The winner of the competition will receive a trip to the United States to attend the C-100 annual conference, and the top three finalists will be awarded a year-long mentorship with a C-100 member.
To date, LSAP has awarded over 104 scholarships to deserving graduate students. This year’s scholarship awardees are expected to demonstrate the highest levels of achievement yet, reflecting the growth of the program and the strong pool of nominees in recent years.
It is a mark of pride that LSAP is one of the rare scholarship competitions in China that emphasizes community involvement. It is also the Committee’s hope that the program will encourage Chinese students to take leadership roles in the global arena. Deng Hongbing, a past awardee from Wuhan University said, “Being a C-100 Leadership Scholarship winner, I understand that I should be more involved in the community affairs, and, because of this award, I am now more concerned about the China-U.S. relationship.”
In addition, the program allows busy professionals to be involved in service. Daniel Chao, former C-100 Vice Chair for Greater China, said, “I value this program because I think it pushes C-100’s mission and visibility. As members, we need to be pushed to be more service oriented as we are all so busy. The Leadership Scholarship is a relatively easy way for our members to contribute. I also got a lot of satisfaction out of dealing with school leaders and students.”
C-100 member Ya-Qin Zhang, Corporate Vice President, Microsoft China, chairs this year’s program. “This collaboration is a natural extension of our long term commitment to China. Microsoft believes, in this critical period of economic transformation, talent cultivation and leadership development are crucial in support of China’s future development goals.”
C-100’s corporate sponsors also value the opportunity to make an impact in the community. Ed Chan, the CEO and President of Wal-Mart China, said, “As part of our response to the ongoing reconstruction efforts in Sichuan, through the Committee of 100 Leadership Scholarship Awards Program, Wal-Mart is very pleased to support various Sichuan Universities to foster leadership and corporate social responsibility among China’s future leaders. Wal-Mart is deeply committed to the long-term reconstruction of the communities devastated by the earthquake, and we congratulate the Committee of 100’s vision and continued efforts in this vitally important area.”
Jiming Zhu, a Vice President of Caterpillar with responsibility for China, said, “Caterpillar sees people and talents as our greatest assets in the fundamental sense as it is ultimately people that make a difference. Our company has been named one of North America’s Top Companies for Leaders for several years. The C-100 program in China has devoted attention and resources to leadership development. It has been a pleasure and privilege for Caterpillar to be part of this initiative and to contribute to China's growth and development.”
C-100 members look forward to the continued development of this exciting program. As Ambassador Linda Tsao Yang says, “It is always comforting to know that in some small way the scholarship may have helped a young person in his/her life’s journey”.
If you would like to attend the awards ceremony and/or support the Leadership Scholarship Awards Program, please contact Su Cheng Harris-Simpson at firstname.lastname@example.org. Sponsorship opportunities may be found here: http://www.committee100.org/initiatives/LSF_Sponsorship_Levels_50level.pdf