The 61st Miss International Pageant finals were held on October 26th at the Yoyogi National Gymnasium in Japan. Emily, Kwok Ching Yau, a graduate of the University of Macau with a Master’s Degree in Integrated Resort and Tourism Management, represented Macau, China in the competition. As the first runner-up of Miss Macau 2019, she impressed the judges and the audience with her confidence and excellent performance on the international stage, and finally stood out from the crowd in the final to win the title of “Miss International Asia Pacific 2023”.
In a media interview with the Department of Integrated Resort and Tourism Management, Emily, Kwok Ching Yau pointed out that her Chinese cultural background and Western educational experience were her unique strengths as a representative of Macau, China. Living in the culturally mixed region of Macau has enabled her to empathize with the contestants and judges from all over the world. Emily, Kwok Ching Yau is full of curiosity about the world, loves life and likes to make friends, so she also won the recognition of other contestants through her enthusiasm and sincerity. She was honored to win the title of “Miss International Asia Pacific 2023”, which she said was a recognition of her kindness, warmth and positive energy from the other contestants.
Faculty Media: What is the direction of career development after graduating from the Master of Integrated Resort Management program at UM? Is there any correlation between the industry you are working in and your Master’s degree?
Emily Yau: My career development after graduation is very much related to tourism. As a host and Miss Macau, my job often involves introducing Macau, planning events, and participating in entertainment programs. What I learned in the classroom can often be applied to my work, for example, when I host events, I will meet clients from all walks of life, especially when I am dealing with six IR operators or government departments, I can understand the changes in the industry more easily.
Faculty Media: What inspired you to take part in the Miss International pageant? What do you think is your greatest strength that makes you stand out from the rest?
Emily Yau: There are two main reasons that made me decide to participate in the Miss International Pageant. Firstly, I wanted to give myself a chance to accept the challenge and live a colorful life without regrets. I went to the pageant with the intention of learning and exchanging ideas, and I also expected to broaden my horizons outside of work and accumulate experience, so that I could take a step forward in my work. The second reason is that I love Macau, and I want to promote the cultural characteristics of Macau. I hope to utilize my status as Miss Macau to meet outstanding girls from all over the world through the pageant stage, and to continue to promote Macau during the pageant and in the future.
Faculty Media: What was the most memorable moment of the whole competition? Did you encounter any challenges while participating in the competition? How did you overcome them?
Emily Yau: The most unforgettable moment during the competition was definitely our sisterhood. Each girl has her own unique personality, and everyone can see their external beauty, but I can see their inner beauty more. These girls are full of wisdom, and have ideals and dreams. We hope that through the Miss International pageant, more people will pay attention to our goals and recognize the role of women’s power in society. I think the biggest difficulty in preparing for the pageant was actually my own heart. No one in this world can say you can’t do it, except for you, so how to overcome my fear and anxiety during this period became my biggest problem. Eventually, I realized that not thinking too much, and seeing light the world is actually a very happy ability. So when I arrived in Japan, I was able to enjoy every day of my trip, which is an unforgettable journey.
Faculty Media: What are your biggest feelings after the competition? Do you have any advice or words of encouragement for current UM students?
Emily Yau: After the competition, I feel that I understand myself better, and I have found the direction and value of my life. I want to see the world, and I also want to share the beautiful place of Macau with the world, and to be an ambassador of cultural exchange.
Instead of giving advice, I would like to share some of my thoughts. One must have dreams, what if they come true? Many people have told me that it is very difficult for Macau, as a small region, to win awards in international beauty pageants. However, it turns out that it’s possible. If I had believed in what other people told me, I would have missed out on a lot of things. So if you have a dream, you must be brave to pursue it and believe in yourself, don’t give up. You only live once, you decide how to go!