Thu, May 30, 2013 - Page 3 News List

Minister ‘respects’ baker’s decision to study abroad

By Huang Hsu-lei and Jake Chung  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Minister of Education Chiang Wei-ling (蔣偉寧) yesterday said he respects master baker Wu Pao-chun’s (吳寶春) decision to attend a school in Singapore for his Executive Master of Business Administration (EMBA) degree and expressed hope that his time there would help promote an international vision for the bakery industry in Taiwan.

Wu, 42, won the title of Bakery Master in the bread category at the Bakery World Cup in Paris in 2010. Although a successful bakery owner, he was ineligible to apply to EMBA programs at Taiwanese universities because he did not have a college degree or a “class A technician” certificate, as required by regulations.

Wu’s decision to apply to Singapore prompted the ministry to say in March that amendments to the Standards for Recognition of Equivalent Educational Level as Qualified for Entering University would be implemented as soon as possible.

The amendment will relax restrictions for subjects that do not offer “class A technician” certificates to allow applications from applicants with “class B technician” certificates and five years’ work experience, and allow individuals with outstanding performances in international competitions or who had been employed by universities as professional skills instructors to apply for masters studies.

On Wednesday, Wu announced through his Facebook page and his spokesman that he has been accepted to the National University of Singapore’s Executive Master of Business Administration program, adding that he would be attending classes for ten days every three months for two years.

Wu added that he has also accepted an offer by the National Taiwan University’s college of management to teach a class as a professional skills instructor.

Chiang said he respected Wu’s decision, adding that the ministry has always encouraged Taiwanese students and youths to study abroad to broaden their minds and increase Taiwanese students’ competitive edge internationally.

In response to media queries on how the ministry viewed its failure to retain talented people like Wu in Taiwan, despite the “Wu Pao-chun clause” — referring to the legal amendments — Chiang said the amendments were meant to improve the entire system, not for one person. Chiang said the amendments would allow people like Wu enter the nation’s universities for postgraduate studies in the future.

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