A Filipino student will be graduating with the highest honors at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST), ranked eight in the 2021 Best Global Universities in Asia by US News & World Report and 34th in the world in the QS World University Rankings 2022 .
Clyde Wesley Ang, 22, is set to graduate at HKUST with double major degrees of Bachelor of Science in Data Science and Technology, and Bachelor of Science in Computer Science with Minors in Robotics and Mathematics.
Ang will receive First Class Honors (equivalent to summa cum laude) and the HKUST Academic Achievement Medal, the highest academic honor given by the university.
“The HKUST Academic Achievement Medal was established in 1994 to commend our undergraduate students for their outstanding academic achievements. This is the highest academic honor bestowed by the University on undergraduates upon graduation,” according to the HKUST website. Last year, 69 students received the medal.
Ang told Manila Bulletin that graduating with honors “feels rewarding especially at the end of four long years in HKUST.” The university’s congregation, or graduation, will be held in November or December.
Before going to HKUST, Ang graduated class valedictorian at Chiang Kai Shek College senior high school in Manila in 2017.
In elementary and high school, he represented the Philippines and won medals in different international math contests. At the International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO), Ang won two silver medals, one bronze medal and an honorable mention from 2014 to 2017.
After graduating from high school, Ang had to choose which university to go to and picked HKUST, saying, “It was one of the schools I was looking at.”
When asked what challenges he faced while studying at HKUST, Ang said, “Initially had a hard time to cope with university since it is a drastically different experience from high school (e.g. with regards to content, pace, exams) but in the end was able to adapt and learned a lot.”
In June 2019, Ang’s robotics team at HKUST won as overall champion and best engineering presentation at the MATE ROV International Competition-Explorer Class held in Tennessee.
“The MATE ROV Competition uses remotely operated vehicles (a.k.a. underwater robots) to inspire and challenge students to learn and creatively apply science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) to solve real-world problems and strengthen their critical thinking, collaboration, entrepreneurship, and innovation,” according to the MATE ROV Competition website.
In many parts of the world, the pandemic had forced schools to hold online classes. At HKUST, the online classes started in November 2019 even before the pandemic started.
“The lack of human contact was hard, but luckily, I didn’t have many technical issues and was still able to access lectures and other materials,” said Ang.
Ang is currently working as a trader at Jane Street, a well-known “trading firm that operates around the clock and around the globe, trading a wide range of financial products, including ETFs [exchange traded fund] , equities, futures, commodities, options, bonds, currencies,” according to the company website.