Nation set for cold weather
Cooler temperatures are expected this week with the advent of the northeastern monsoon, the Central Weather Bureau said yesterday. Daily lows are expected to go down to between 21°C and 23°C nationwide, and central and southern Taiwan could see a 10-degree differential in daytime and nighttime temperatures, the bureau added. The northeastern monsoon is expected to bring scattered showers to northern, northeastern and eastern parts of the country, the bureau said.
Firms’ set low English bar
Taiwanese businesses expect new employees to score an average of 550 points in the Test of English for International Communication (TOEIC) exam — much lower than the standard required by their South Korean counterparts, according to Educational Testing Service (ETS), an educational testing organization that conducts English proficiency tests. ETS said the results of its survey showed that only 27.9 percent of the 1,000 largest businesses in the country ask to see a TOEIC score when they recruit new employees. The average score these businesses expect is 550, ETS said. In South Korea, nearly 100 percent of the 1,000 largest companies demand an average TOEIC score of 700 from new employees, while in Japan, 83.4 percent of the companies demand a TOEIC score of 550 on average, it said.
Taiwan chefs scoop gold
Taiwanese chefs won four gold medals on the first day of the 2012 IKA World Culinary Olympics in Erfurt, Germany, on Saturday, winning their honors in the individual culinary artistry category. The showpieces the four chefs presented won golds by scoring at least 90 points out of a possible 100. The Taiwanese foursome won four of the eight gold medals awarded in the artistry category, in which 44 chefs competed. Yang Jian-hong (楊鍵鴻), a student at the Department of Hospitality Management at Mingdao University, won gold with a dough figurine of Matsu, the Chinese goddess of the sea, surrounded by a dragon. Lin Shih-yu (林士育), an executive chef at Hungkuang University, presented a piece with figures from the movie Transformers made of pasta, while Yang Sheng-kai (楊勝凱), a high school English teacher, created a sculpture of hunting dogs carved out of taros. Ye Kao-chen (葉國禎), a graduate from Hungkuang University, also showcased his carving skills by using taros to create a delicate scene of lotus flowers.
Cancer threatens youth
The number of women in Taiwan under the age of 30 diagnosed with breast cancer is on the rise and may surpass 100 this year, said Huang Chu-chiu (黃菊秋), president of the Taiwan Breast Cancer Alliance. A growing number of young people are getting breast cancer, with the number of breast cancer patients under 30 reaching an all-time high of 97 last year, said Huang, citing Department of Health statistics, adding that the number is expected to top 100 this year. Chang Chuan-hsun (常傳訓), director of oncology at the Department of Surgery at Cheng Hsin General Hospital in Taipei, said smoking and stress were the two main factors behind the increase in breast cancer among young people. They have also led to women in Taiwan generally developing breast cancer at a younger age than in the West, he added.