Senior Station Officer
HKSAR Fire Services Department
Theresa has a strong belief in always trying to reach for her goals, regardless of the outcome, so that she does not regret her choices. With this in mind, she decided to apply to become a firefighter during her final year at HKUST, although she did so secretly as she was afraid of being laughed at by her classmates. It turned out that she had nothing to worry about, as she was accepted into the Fire Services department shortly after graduation.
Since then, Theresa has tried many different postings and has enjoyed them all. Her motto is that as long as you put your heart into your work, there will always be something you can contribute and something you can learn from the experience. She currently serves on the front line, fighting fires and handling special cases such as rescue assignments. The adage "live and learn" is especially true for firefighters: each call to action is unique and there are many challenges specific to each case.
Theresa follows a strict regimen to stay in tip-top shape for her job. The fitness requirements for being selected as a firefighter are just the basics: for example, firefighters—both male and female alike—must be able to run 4.8 km within 25 minutes, but firefighting missions or rescue operations are rarely so short. Firefighters must also carry heavy equipment and stay calm under intense pressure while performing these physical feats.
Theresa's university experience helped prepare her to tackle these challenges. She recalls her days at HKUST as being a very stressful but happy time: there were never-ending quizzes and assignments, but whenever those got to be too much, she could always go for a swim or a run in between classes to relax. Theresa also worked part-time while she studied, and was used to long days where she would wake up at 5 am and put in a 4 hour shift at work before going to class.