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Hong Kong businessman pledges track windfall to Stanford
STANFORD -- A Hong Kong businessman who had an enormously lucky day at the track - winning $5 million "accidentally" - has pledged the full amount to Stanford University to endow a fellowship fund for students from Hong Kong and China.
Larry C. K. Yung, chairman of the China International Trust and Investment Corporation, won the money last October in a multiple quinella bet placed at a Hong Kong racetrack. A longshot horse, Best of Luck, which went off at odds of 100-to-1, won its race, making the multiple bet a big winner.
Yung later said he had intended to wager on a different nag, and placed the winning bet by mistake over the telephone.
When Stanford President Gerhard Casper traveled to Asia last November, he met with Yung, the father of a Stanford student, to thank him for a previous $1 million pledge to Stanford. That's when the multi- millionaire pledged his racetrack winnings to provide graduate fellowships to students from China and Hong Kong.
"Our timing was quite fortunate," said Steven Suda, director of Asian Operations in the Office of Development. "President Casper was describing his vision of how Stanford could help educate the best and the brightest students from China - and indeed from all of Asia - and Mr. Yung said he'd be delighted to help in this very worthwhile effort."
Details of how the fellowships will be administered are currently being formulated, Suda said.
"The availability of the fellowships will be determined by the arrival of the funds," Suda said. "We hope to start awarding fellowships next year for the 1995 fall quarter."
With more than half of the international student body now coming from Asia, Suda said that the university is continuing to seek active support throughout the region to help endow additional fellowships for students from virtually every major Asian country.
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