Xu Mingsheng’s mobility was strong, and within two days, Li Zheng received a call from him.
“Li Zheng, it’s done. Come and do the formalities. My old friends would like to see you, let’s sit together on the day of the formalities?” Xu Mingsheng was smiling cheerfully on the other end of the phone.
Li Zheng breathed a sigh of relief, with the negotiation of the title of Hong Kong University, his lab plan was halfway to success. He had traveled to many places in the past two days, but he could not find a satisfactory place to build his lab.
Li Zheng wanted more than just two houses for his lab. In his last life, he had returned to China from the laboratory in Lengquan Harbor, and the working environment had changed drastically.
Compared with Cold Spring Harbor, the working conditions in China could even be described as “tough”.
In 1990, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) officially launched the Human Genome Project (HGP). The Human Genome Project, together with the Manhattan atomic bomb project and the Apollo project, was known as the three major scientific projects. It had been hailed as the “moon landing project” of life sciences, but ironically, China, which accounted for one-fifth of the world’s population, was excluded from the project.
When the news reached China, the whole country was shocked and the entire Chinese biology community fell silent. Mr. Liu Jiasheng, known as the number one person in biology in China at that time, entered the main hall with his crutches and talked with the old chief for a day and a night. After that, the state’s finances finally opened to biological research, Chinese biology to catch up, and finally in the late 20th century, a place in the world of biology.
In September 1999, China officially joined the so-called “moon landing project” of life sciences.
However, there were still differences between the rapidly developing domestic biology and foreign biology, and what Li Zheng felt most was the infrastructure. The instruments, equipment, and resources of the first-class laboratories in China were not bad, but the working environment was very different from those in foreign countries.
The Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory was located in Long Island, USA, near the mountains and the water, and the entire research center was designed as if it were a villa with perfect recreational facilities for employees. Julia Earhart, a famous American TV anchor, once said that Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory was like a villa. Julia Earhart, a famous American TV anchor, once said, “This place belongs to a bunch of idiots like you who are only in love with the laboratory, what a waste! If it were me, I would make every day like a vacation.” This was a clear indication of the good environment of top foreign labs.
Now with limited funds, Li Zheng didn’t dare to expect his lab to be like Cold Spring Harbor, but it mustn’t be the kind of one short house in the Chinese mainland, where it was the shortest and most shabby, and there might be a sign on the door for so-and-so’s lab.
So the land for the lab must be big, even if there was no money to build it now, then fill it in little by little, and one day, among the top international biopharmaceutical labs, Li Zheng’s lab would have a place!
Li Zheng walked into the gates of Hong Kong University with the relevant information, finding land to build a house, talking to someone was much better than him banging around like a headless fly.
The melodious music floated in every corner of the campus, and young men and women walked out of the teaching building laughing and talking, the whole campus was filled with the taste of youth. Li Zheng somewhat nostalgically walked down the paths of Hong Kong University, he suddenly looked forward to the upcoming university life.
” What college are you from?” A girl was pushed and shoved by her companion and arrived in front of Li Zheng.
Li Zheng’s face showed a momentary blankness, then he smiled politely, “I’m not a student of Hong Kong University yet.”
The girl was stunned at the words. Her companion behind her was already laughing quietly.
“Still a high school student, I told you, he looks about the same age as my younger brother.”
Li Zheng ……
Forcing back his frustration, Li Zheng asked these girls for the address of the school administration office, and ten minutes later, he was standing smoothly on the eleventh floor of the administration building of Hong Kong University.
As soon as he stepped out of the elevator, a strange expression appeared on Li Zheng’s face. The corridor that was obviously very quiet just now, the moment he stepped in, it was as if an originally still movie had pressed the play button, and it was suddenly noisy.
“Xiao Hu ah, has the document I told you to print been printed yet?”
“Oops, I’m out of hot water in my hot water bottle!”
“Oh Hu, is it raining outside today?”
An old professor in his fifties or sixties arrived in the corridor in front of the elevator at the same time as if they had an appointment, and when they saw each other, there was a momentary freeze in the atmosphere.
“Haha, Old Liu, you’ve come out too?”
“I’ll get the hot water.”
“Oh, I’ll print the paperwork.”
They both looked at the other old professor, who looked a little gray at the temples, coming out of his office, “What is it, Headmaster?”
Su Changji lagged, “Can’t I come out and check the weather!”
Professor Liu and Professor Gao looked at each other, okay, of course, your office on the 13th floor can’t see the weather outside, come to the 11th floor to see the weather, no problem!
Xiao Hu, that was, Hu Zhiyuan apparently still had some condition outside, he sat in his office for a long time before coming out. Just now Professor Gao asked him to print the document? And …… weather.
“Headmaster, it’s a nice day, it won’t rain!” Hu Zhiyuan looked out the window and hurriedly replied.
There was an awkward silence in the corridor.
At this moment, Xu Mingsheng came out of an office laughingly.
“If you want to look at him, just look at him squarely, you guys, you’re not afraid of losing face in front of your juniors!” Xu Mingsheng’s words were full of derision.
He looked at Hu Yuanzhi, who still looked dazed, and coughed, “Xiao Hu ah, there’s nothing wrong, you go back first.”
Hu Yuanzhi went back to his office with a flustered face.
The corridor quieted down again, and Xu Mingsheng walked over to Li Zheng, “Go sit in the conference room first, I’ll show you who to recognize!” Saying that, he looked at the three who were pretending to look at the scenery, then said, “Except some people who can’t bear curiosity and run out on their own.”
“Cough,” Su Changzhi awkwardly coughed twice, “Ming Sheng ah, this is the youngest millionaire in Hong Kong that you mentioned, isn’t it, young indeed, young indeed! Hahaha.”
Su Changzhi, another acquaintance. When Li Zheng visited Hong Kong University in his last life, this esteemed old man was already 85 years old, the old man had gotten stomach cancer at the age of seventy and fought cancer for more than ten years.
At that time, Li Zheng’s anti-cancer drug had just been successfully tested on mice, and when the old man heard about it, he specially came to the hotel where Li Zheng was staying to meet him, holding his hand and telling him that he was really tired after fighting with cancer for so many years and wished to fight with the disease, and he volunteered to be a volunteer for the clinical phase four of Li Zheng’s anti-cancer drug, which shocked Li Zheng very much.
“Headmaster Su.” Li Zheng bowed slightly and performed the senior salute to this old man.
Su Changzhi was startled, “You know me?”
“Headmaster Su is highly respected, and although I haven’t been in Hong Kong for long, I’ve heard of your name.” Li Zheng said sincerely.
Su Changzhi laughed, this time it wasn’t an awkward laugh. Although with his reputation, he had heard a lot of such words, but this was not a comfortable sound coming from the youngest millionaire in Hong Kong.
The four of them entered the conference room, and Su Changzhi found that just after leaving for a while, there were many more people in the conference room, and the large conference table couldn’t even sit. Needless to say, these people must have heard the gossip to see the youngest millionaire in Hong Kong.
At yesterday’s once-in-January meeting, Xu Mingsheng changed his usual silent state and began the meeting by talking about the importance of biopharmaceuticals to all mankind, emphasizing that biology was the science that drove the evolution of mankind itself! At the same time, he also criticized the small size of the humanities department, which was only concerned with personal gain and loss. In the end, the money should be spent on the exploration of life sciences.
The Department of Humanities was furious, Professor Guo of the Department of Social Sciences almost smashed his stinky shoes into Xu Mingsheng’s face, and Xu Mingsheng’s words came down to the fact that if the university treasury allocated any more money to the Department of Humanities, it would be almost anti-human! So, a few respected professors from the Faculty of Humanities did not hesitate to poke at the Faculty of Science and Engineering.
Oh, you have contributed to the progress of mankind, you have a big attitude, but you should produce results! Last time, a certain biology lab took away millions of Hong Kong dollars to develop the conjectured shape of the RSE virus. And there was a certain physics lab that was very diligent about applying for research grants, but what about the results? Maybe they’d be half-buried in the ground and nothing would come out.
The Humanities Department’s mouthpiece was very good, especially the Dean of the Law School, who scolded a group of big shots from the Science and Engineering Department with his skills of fighting with words in court.
The group of old professors of the science and engineering department were suffocating ah, they didn’t know how many times Xu Mingsheng had scolded. At this time Xu Mingsheng threw a heavy bomb.
A student from the medical school published an SCI paper on the Danodin catalyst, and also successfully extracted the catalyst out of the medical lab at the Hong Kong University. Moreover, Roche and Pfizer each paid a high price for the right to use the patent for five years. Xu Mingsheng didn’t say the specific price, but he said this, “I’m proud that our college was able to cultivate …… the emergence of such a talent ah, the youngest millionaire in Hong Kong, exchanging knowledge for great wealth, very enlightening ah!”
The way he acted like he was so proud of himself but still acted as if he was a light-hearted person, in other people’s eyes, it was obvious that it was two words “villainous ambition”!
Not to mention the fact that Xu Mingsheng spoke out about the fact that Li Zheng hadn’t enrolled in school yet, causing the crowd to snub him. It was because Xu Mingsheng had made Li Zheng sound so excellent that it aroused the curiosity of all the professors at the meeting. That was why there was this scene today.
Originally, a simple procedure wouldn’t require so many people, at least those old professors who didn’t have administrative positions didn’t have to make this trip at all, but they came, and not only that, there were also some middle-aged professors who were a little more well-informed.
Su Changzhi’s heart was sneering, on a normal day, asking them to come to a meeting to participate in an activity, one was either busy with scientific research, or not feeling well, but now they were all full of energy and legs.
“Student Li, find a place to sit.” Su Changzhi said so, looking around, he was embarrassed to discover that because of the sudden increase in people, there was actually no space at the conference table!!!
A group of respected old professors in the arena couldn’t help but have embarrassed looks on their faces. Professor Chen of the Law Department laughed and stood up, Professor Chen looked to be in his early forties, and was among the less senior professors present, “Come, student Li, sit here with me, I’m here to see the youngest millionaire in Hong Kong anyway, it’s nothing.” Professor Chen said very matter-of-factly, causing the audience to burst into laughter.
Li Zheng hesitated, and after expressing his gratitude to Professor Chen, he sat over. He could see that if he didn’t sit down, the awkward atmosphere would probably spread further.
As soon as Li Zheng sat down, almost everyone’s eyes gathered on him. Li Zheng’s body couldn’t help but stiffen, he had seen big scenes in his last life, but he was still a little uncomfortable with so many old-timers looking at him like a monkey in a zoo.
Su Changzhi was the first to break the stalemate, “All of them are our own people, I will introduce them first, from left to right are Professor Guo from the Faculty of Social Sciences, Professor Zhong from the Department of Law, Professor He from the Department of Literature, Professor Liu from the Department of Physics, Professor Zhou from the Department of Chemistry, Professor Xu you are very familiar with him, next to him are also from the School of Medicine, Professor Zhao, Professor Qian, Professor Sun, Professor Li ……”
Almost all the leaders of the departments at Hong Kong University had arrived, especially the medical school, where all the full professors were present, even more so than in the college meeting. No wonder Su Changzhi’s heart was unhappy.
Li Zheng stood up one by one to greet them, causing those old professors to nod incessantly, and even those old professors from the Humanities Department couldn’t help but look at him with a softer gaze.
These old professors in the Humanities Department had a complicated outlook on Li Zheng, because Li Zheng’s transgressions had greatly caused the Humanities Department to take a loss at the meeting. But what kind of teacher didn’t like a good student? No wonder, such a good kid went to study biopharma ……
The old professors of the Humanities Department took a glance at the complacent Xu Mingsheng and felt even more uncomfortable.
“Ahem, there are two topics for this meeting today. One, the admission issue of Li Zheng. Second, the issue of Li Zheng’s lab’s listing. Both of these matters are related to our newly baked youngest millionaire of Hong Kong, ah.” Su Changzhi said smilingly.
The old professors let out a good-natured laugh.
Li Zheng looked at Xu Mingsheng, enrollment? Didn’t we say I’d be entering in the spring?
Xu Mingsheng looked at him, not saying a word. Yesterday, after he mentioned to Su Changzhi that Li Zheng was enrolling in the spring, he was scolded by Su Changzhi, if it wasn’t for the fact that Su Changzhi was both the headmaster and his mentor, Xu Mingsheng would have wanted to slap the table and leave. No one had spoken to him like this since he had become the college president.
But Su Changzhi had a point, although their university was the highest school in Hong Kong, what if Roche or Pfizer offered to send Li Zheng to study abroad! Those pharmaceutical companies would love to have calves growing on their land.
So sooner rather than later! Let’s set this up as soon as possible.
“There is an Asian Biopharmaceutical Conference in Tokyo at the end of the year, and the quota given to our Hong Kong University is three professors and three students, and the three professors have already been decided. Two graduate students have been selected, and one has not been decided, after all, this is an international conference, to show the best face of the biology team of our Hong Kong University, so the arrival of you, Li Zheng, has relieved our urgent need.”
“Li Zheng na, you just enroll early, it’s also convenient for us to report your name to the organizing committee. As for the credits for the first year …… ” Su Changzhi thought for two minutes and spoke up, “The required credits for our year is 30 points, and that paper of yours counts as 15 points, is that okay?”
If you say so, Headmaster Su, can he say no?
Li Zheng smiled bitterly, “Headmaster, I don’t know if Professor Xu has mentioned to you that I’ve been organizing a lab recently, so I might be busy in the near future and can’t care about this side of the school.”
Su Changzhi immediately said, “You don’t have to worry about that, just be flexible.”
Seeing that Li Zheng had agreed, Su Changzhi’s face was clearly happy, “Then let’s move on to the matter of the lab’s title, which we have already discussed at the meeting. We discussed this matter at the meeting. It was approved by a vote at that time. Li Zheng ah, I heard that you are looking for a place to build a lab, our old library is at the westernmost part of the campus, it’s also big, except for the few rooms where we put miscellaneous things, the rest can be allocated to you for the lab.”
Li Zheng didn’t think that the two million actually had this effect, and to be honest he was a bit impressed, Hong Kong University had a superior location and perfect facilities, and for a person doing research, having a laboratory of his own in the university was of special significance.
Li Zheng took a deep breath and tried to resist the great temptation.
“Thank you very much for your generosity, Headmaster, but the design drawings for the lab are already out and I like them very much. I’m afraid the design would have to be reworked if it was in the library.”
The professors present were a little surprised, Li Zheng’s excuse wasn’t exactly clever, how could one produce design drawings without even identifying the ground, but everyone could hear that Li Zheng had refused.
He actually refused to do it?!
Many professors, especially those science and engineering professors who had their own labs, felt somewhat uncomfortable when they heard Su Changzhi say that he wanted to allocate the building in the old library to Li Zheng.
The conditions of the labs at Hong Kong University were much better than the Chinese mainland, but they were definitely not as extravagant as a building. If Li Zheng had agreed to go through with it, then his lab would be above Professor Zhu in terms of floor space.
A young junior who was actually over his head, these old seniors would be somewhat uncomfortable in their hearts. The first reason why they didn’t object was that they were too old to pull this old face, and the second was because who asked them not to give two million to the university.
But when Li Zheng really refused, they were embarrassed again.
“Don’t be mentally burdened, since the principal has asked, you can continue.” The one who spoke was Professor Zhao from the medical school.
Li Zheng smiled and shook his head, “If the professors really want to help me, just help me find out where there has about twenty acres of land for sale. The environment is better, the transportation shouldn’t be too inconvenient, and it’s best to be close to the school.”
The group of professors looked at each other, twenty acres, it turns out that in the end, he wasn’t interested in the library, such a small building.
Alas, they were convinced of their old age.
Professor Zhong of the School of Law spoke with a knitted eyebrow, “I do know of a place that meets your requirements, except that it’s a bit too big. It’s about ten kilometers away from our school, built three or four villas and dug an artificial lake, then the developer ran out of money, I was the one who did the bankruptcy liquidation.”
Li Zheng’s eyes just lit up, reminded by Zhong Jingming, he remembered.
In 1982, one of the bleakest periods in the history of the property industry in Hong Kong, land prices, property prices, and rents in Hong Kong fell sharply across the board. According to statistics, land prices fell by 40-60% at the time, which wasn’t surprising.
Compared to the later generations of the Hong Kong property market that easily fell at more than 100,000 to 200,000 a square meter, the current price was simply cabbage price.
“Professor Zhong, can you show me around sometime?” Li Zheng, an experimentalist, wouldn’t purposely hoard land and houses, but he wouldn’t be foolish enough to refuse the ones that hit his hands.
Zhong Jingming was startled, he really wanted it ah.
“With the addition of the artificial lake, the entire development is close to 25 acres, which will be a little lower than the market price because of the falling land price and bankruptcy liquidation, but even so, it’s at least 80 million Hong Kong dollars.”