Paying millions of dollars to secure their children a spot at an elite college may
sound absurd to many parents, but some are willing to do this.
Nicole Shen, the Chinese mother of a high school student in Palo Alto, California, said she would be wi
lling to pay a pretty penny upfront to get her daughter admitted to a top-tier university if she could afford it. “As long as eve
rything is legal,” she added.Zhao, 52, was introduced to William “Rick” Singer, a college consultant in California and the mast
ermind behind the scandal, by Michael Wu, who worked as an adviser at the Los Angeles area branch of in
vestment bank Morgan Stanley, according to the Los Angeles Times. Wu has since been fired.
Two wealthy Chinese families have recently been in the spotlight and t
he subject of widespread discussion after media reports showed they paid huge am
ounts in a high-profile college admissions scandal. The sums they paid dwarfed the typical amount footed by US parents.
The highest-known payoff to date is the $6.5 million by billionaire Zhao Tao, president and co-founder of Shandong Buchang Pharmaceuticals Co.
lennial enjoyed buying many Palace Museum souvenirs, gifts and other creative produ
cts. “I tried quite a few from makeup kits, lipstick, blush, to various creative gadgets. They are good so
uvenirs in combining the Palace Museum culture and history with their functions,” Dong said.
According to He Jianmin, a professor specializing in cultural tourism research at the Shanghai University of Finance and Econo
mics, said both the Palace Museum and Shanghai Disneyland have high reputation among visitors. Since both bo
ast intellectual property rights over their creative products, counterfeits are virtually unknown.
Shanghai Disneyland, a $5.5 billion theme park, received more than 11 milli
on visitors in its first year of operation (2016-17), and is “close” to the break-even point.
which means the project will provide a large number of jobs to lo
cal communities,” he said. “It is expected that up to 100,000 to 200,000 locals will be d
rawn to the new economic zone after its completion. They will rise out of poverty by working in this zone.”
The project will be beneficial to both China and Cambodia, Qian said.
“Many Chinese companies go overseas to expand their businesses. However, because of a la
ck of experience and related knowledge, most of them face huge obstacles abroad,” he said. “Our company has done overseas business for mo
re than 40 years and will provide a familiar business environment for other Chinese companies in the new economic zone.”
Some Chinese companies have decided to join the investment in the ne
w Cambodia project, Qian said, adding that in his opinion, a company should follow the nati
onal policy and direction such as Belt and Road Initiative while being profitable at the same time.
Nevertheless, while the team once thought that AI offered all th
e solutions, a new question soon arose. Audience members asked: “Where’s the original flavor?”
After restoring the images to their original state, they soon began to realize that people still needed some nostalgia. For examp
le, old series made by Hong Kong-based company TVB usually have yellowing images, but many viewers co
mplained that its retro ambience had vanished after the color cast was corrected, Jiang says.
“People then said our restored version looked like a camera filter has been ad
ded,” Pei says with a bitter smile. “We then had to go back and adapt our methods.”
More complicated algorithms were later developed to carry out a tailored plan for each type of ser
ies, including those by TVB, Chinese mainland productions from the 1980s and Taiwan productions of the 199
0s. Some techniques in hands-on restorations were introduced later too, as Pei confesses even the best AI cannot handle every case.