N.E.mation! mentors find helping students meaningful
Inter-school digital animation competition N.E.mation! builds bonds
She started mentoring students at N.E.mation! soon after graduating with a degree in animation, and she has seen them come and go over seven seasons.
Mrs Hazel Ho, 30, who joined as a mentor in the fourth season of the competition in 2009, has no plans to stop.
She told The New Paper: "It has been rewarding for me over the years. Many students come in not knowing anything about animation, so we really see how they grow with the art form.
"After they graduate from secondary school, some even pursue further studies in animation."
N.E.mation! is an inter-school digital animation competition that encourages students to express their thoughts on Total Defence.
It is organised by Nexus - the Ministry of Defence department responsible for Total Defence and National Education - and animation company Animagine. This year's edition was the 11th.
Miss Ng Kok Yin, 19, was in Secondary 2 when she joined N.E.mation! 6 in 2011.
The then School of Science and Technology student and her team made the top 40, where they met Mrs Ho.
Mrs Ho mentored them and they reached the top 10.
Miss Ng said: "I am still in contact with (Mrs Ho) on Facebook. She is motherly and kind.
"She was also cheerful during the competition, which raised the morale of our group, because competing for one whole week was quite tiring and stressful."
Miss Ng said Mrs Ho invited them to her wedding a year later.
Mr Xavier Lai, 29, has also been an N.E.mation! instructor and mentor since 2011, after finishing national service.
He was a chief instructor for the past two editions.
He said: "It is meaningful because we work with students.
"They might not be enthusiastic or skilful at the start, but they are resilient, and we learn a lot from them as we are teaching them."