A seventh former of CNEC Christian College took part in scientific research at the renowned Israel Institute of Technology - Technion - as part of the SciTech 2000 scheme this summer. Technion, Israel's oldest institution of higher learning and located in the town of Haifa, is the country's top school for budding scientists and engineers. Gary Chan Kwun-chuen, 18, applied to participate in SciTech 2000 - an international science and technology research camp for high school students - in July. Although the fees for the camp were expensive, about US$5,000 (HK$39,000), Kwun- chuen had the support of his headmaster, Samuel Lau Yan- tak, who sought sponsorship for the pupil. 'I wanted him to prove that Hong Kong students were not worse than international ones. Kwun-chuen is a typical local student from a normal second ary school, not from a so-called famous school,' Mr Lau said. Mr Lau said although local students were restricted to the examination syllabus because it affected their career prospects, they showed inventiveness in the sciences. Kwun-chuen said: 'The 69 participants in the camp from around the world were top students. Those from the United States were really brilliant, but I was still confident that I performed as well as they in terms of scientific research. 'It was a completely different approach than in Hong Kong. We always do experiments with model answers. 'We just try and fit the results of experiments to the model answers. 'However, this time I had to really work flat out to arrive at results for my research.' Kwun-chuen said he was fairly proud of himself. The budding scientist worked in the advanced laboratory and was supervised by tutors on the research project. Kwun-chuen also had an opportunity to explore Israel and get a glimpse of Jewish culture and history. 'We visited Israel's frontier, which used to be part of the border defence. I could imagine what it was like there once by the traces left behind by war.' Kwun-chuen said he enjoyed the trip even though it took time for him to get used to the lifestyle and food in Israel. He hoped his participation would encourage other students to join science exchange programmes to broaden their horizons. He criticised the Hong Kong Government for not investing enough money in scientific development, which was important for a cosmopolitan city.