Outstanding Math Graduate Zhong Benxin: The Man Who Moves Fast

Zhong Benxin is the only outstanding graduate of 2018 that finished his undergraduate studies in three years. During his time at SUSTech, he was praised not only for his near-perfect GPA of 3.95 but for his willingness to stay one step ahead. At every stage of his studies, he took advanced grade courses earlier than other students, he was early in applying for foreign universities and always completed his examination papers before the time limit. In a word, a legend was born in this young man.

No Regrets Because Of His Love

“I like new things," When asked about why he chose SUSTech, Zhong Benxin explains: "I fell in love with SUSTech because of an attractive poster, a sincere professor, and an innovative education system, so I decided to connect my life with SUSTech." When he came to SUSTech, Zhong Benxin kept his eye on the Department of Mathematics.

On his arrival at SUSTech, Zhong Benxin was initially challenged by the difficulty of the course and the large work volume. In order to keep up, he got up at 6:50am and worked as late as 10pm at night to complete his assignments. When invited to an event, he would plan ahead in order to finish his studies and learn new and interesting things in his spare time. When asked how he learned efficiently, Zhong Benxin believes that it is as simple as listening carefully in class and taking notes.

In order to find his research direction, he studied a wide variety of courses in his freshman year and thought about his future plans. He participated in a discussion class on algebraic number theory for the mathematics juniors and seniors. Zhong Benxin did not have much foundation to fall back on, yet he did not quit in fear. Instead, he opted to study for more than ten hours a week to study this course. In one semester, he has compiled more than two hundred pages of notes, and the understanding of the course is similar to that of the seniors in the class.

After completing all his undergraduate courses in three years and achieving excellent grades throughout his classes, Zhong Benxin has clearly put in more effort than others. In the eyes of his classmates, he is as diligent as he is talented.

Clear Goals

He said: "University students must have goals, so they don't wind up doing nothing."

In order to find his goal, Zhong Benxin repeatedly explored and practiced. He joined a project group called “Application and Innovation of Blockchain Technology in Distributed Computing,” and also participated in internships of the Big Data Center on blockchain-related projects. Zhong Benxin took the opportunity to learn about blockchain and developed a deeper understanding of the principles of intelligent development of this unique industry. This laid the foundation for the later selection of his research direction in information security.

However, SUSTech had not yet opened a related major. After consulting the teacher, Zhong Benxin decided to major in mathematics, conduct online learning of information security courses in his spare time, and then transfer to his preferred research focus of information security after graduation.

With his advanced planning, Zhong Benxin became one of the few early graduates of SUSTech that are admitted into top international institutions. He said: "I know a few older SUSTechers who graduated earlier than others. One went to Oxford, one went to London, and I am going to École Polytechnique.” While preparing for early graduation, he also started applying to the school in his junior year. To achieve this, he carefully collected various supporting materials and prepared for interviews and written examinations. Because of Benxin’s excellent grades and solid practices of academic knowledge, he successfully obtained the offer from École Polytechnique, or in English, Polytechnic University of Paris.

Broaden Horizons

In addition to completing his studies, Zhong Benxin attaches great importance to broadening his horizons and capabilities.

He has been swimming a couple times per week since freshman year.

He claims to be tone-deaf and lacking in musical talent, but after participating in a project of human brain language cognition, he learned that singing and learning musical instruments could improve a person's musical endowment. Since then, he fell in love with singing and taught himself the ukulele. Although his new-found enjoyment in singing and ukulele is by no means professional, it enriched his after-school life, and he found that his musical sense has improved significantly, following some professional testing.

Zhong Benxin used his summer vacation with his classmates in the Tianzhu Tibetan Autonomous County of Gansu Province to investigate the current status and development potential of the local economy. They visited local high schools, businesses, and pastures, and the simplicity of Tibetan herders left a deep impression on Zhong Benxin. "We  did not know each other, came from different ethnic groups and had completely different life habits. However, they became more familiar with each other after sharing food and shelter with the herders' families, and gathering around campfires on the grassland." In addition to the deep friendship with local Tibetan people, his research team became more united and harmonious, resulting in outstanding achievements the grand prize for SUSTech’s summer practice.

In order to prepare for the future study of Paris, Zhong Benxin will self-learn French this summer after graduation. This is Zhong Benxin, not afraid of difficulties, and bravely go forward.

Text:: Dong Zipei (Student News Agency)

Translation and Adaptation: Chris Edwards

Proofreading: Fan Yining