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It is lunchtime. Hundreds of students are lining up in front of the canteen at Anqing Normal University campus. But they’re not waiting for a meal. Instead, they’re queuing to buy hand-painted postcards made by Maoken Studio, a student start-up project.


  Hu Maoken, the leader of the studio, is a 23-year-old animation major at the university. Though he didn’t expect the postcard project to be so successful, he seized the opportunity to make animation a profitable career.


  Hard work pays off


  Six months have now passed since the event at the canteen. Hu Maoken is gradually becoming a businessman. He set up his own animation company in July and rented an office space at a start-up incubator in Hefei.


  The company’s major business is to design postcards for various universities in Anhui province. With the income, Hu has managed to cover the company’s daily expenses and pay salaries to his seven employees.


  Since the company has a reputation for smart designs and delicate paintings, it has started making commercial animations and posters, which have the potential of making more profit than selling postcards. The company is growing steadily and rapidly.


  Behind the momentum is Hu and his team’s hard work. Hu only gives himself three days off each month, which means he spends most of his weekends in the office. But he quite enjoys it.


  “Compared with other start-up businesses, ours is not that difficult,” he says. “Though we’ve had hard times, I’ve never thought of giving up.”


  Struggle in school


  Many people throw themselves into the animation industry with the aim of improving the industry in China. Hu, however, chose the major because he loves painting.


  “I’ve loved painting since I was a kid and I studied it in high school,” he says. Therefore, he cherishes the opportunity of studying animation at university.


  Hu’s resume is impressive: he is a straight-A student, a first-class scholarship winner, a class monitor, and president of the university’s Students’ Union. Only Hu knows how hard he worked to achieve all this.


  “It’s common for us to paint until midnight. If we don’t have solid painting skills or don’t know how to use related computer software, we won’t be able to establish ourselves in the industry,” he says.


  Many of his classmates have given up on the way, but Hu is determined. “I believe that as long as I work hard and keep going, one day I will realize my animation dream,” he says.


  Difficult skill to perfect


  Hu got the idea of making hand-painted postcards after a trip to Xiamen, Fujian province. He saw many beautiful hand-painted postcards there, so he thought, why not paint his university on postcards and sell them to graduates?


  “It’s a good way to express our love to the university while offering graduates a memorable gift,” says Hu.


  He and another seven students in his class formed a team and embarked on the project in April. In order to find the most symbolic places in the university, they walked around the campus many times.


  “After selecting the places, we spent several days observing and reconstructing the scenes on a computer,” says Hu. Even though the team members are top students in their class, it took them several days to finish only a single piece.


  Hu and his team spent an entire month making 1,000 postcards of nine different scenes. They sold out at the event in front of the canteen.


  Hu is glad that he can turn his passion into a career. “If I hadn’t worked so hard in school, or I hadn’t seized the opportunity, none of this would have happened,” says Hu. “I think anyone who has a passion and keeps doing it will be successful.”

  令胡茂恳感到欣慰的是他可以把激情转化为事业。他说:“要是我在学校没有努力学习、或者我没有抓住这个机遇,就没有现在收获的一切。我觉得一个人只要满怀激情并持之以恒就会成功。”(编辑:海峡教育网 周华莹) 创业就业QQ群147979935