Category Archives: Communications

Polaris Beta Testing – Week One

Polaris began its beta testing on February 22, 2017. Over the past two weeks, over 250 students, duty crew members, duty administrators (DA), and weekend coordinators have started using Polaris. From such as diverse group of users, I have received much valuable feedback and made adjustments to Polaris accordingly. In this week’s blog post, I will detail some of the user responses and how they are addressed.

Continue reading

Airlines as Cultural Representations

It’s been a long time since my last post…Good to be back here to talk about commercial aviation. I have previously mentioned, in my first blog, that different airlines can be seen as distinct agents that represent the cultures of their home countries. I made this point totally out of my observations. When I boarded my first few flights almost a decade ago, I started to notice different seat decorations of different carriers. It was not until later years that I figured out some meaning out of these ostensible differences. For example, hidden behind the cloud-shaped figures imprinted on seats of Air China is the oriental philosophy that promises happiness and tranquility; ANA’s signature boarding music Another Sky brings a taste of traditional Japanese music, ongaku, to its passengers. Yet as I think about the subject deeper, I have found out that the footprint of an airline’s culture extends far beyond explicit manifestations of national symbols. As you will see in the three case studies below, both the indigenous, regional culture and the internal corporate atmosphere have huge impacts on almost every dimension of an airline’s operation and the product it delivers. The cumulation of every little cultural detail, in turn, shapes the identity of airlines and helps them differentiate from their competitors.

IMG_1862.JPG

ANA Onboard Japanese Meal Selection from Tokyo Narita to Shanghai (Picture taken by myself)  Continue reading

The Hidden Gem of Westtown School – KC

This semester during my Junior year, I am enrolled in the Independent Study Program and having the time of my life diving deep into material that specifically interests me in a subject I excel. After hearing about this unique offer during my Sophomore year, I seized the opportunity. After a proposal, I was accepted into the History Independent Seminar where I’ve been study legislation and sex education in Pennsylvania.

Read More: Pennsylvania’s Sex Education Policy Is Scarier Than You’d Think!

Upon first impression, I thought this class would simply be a time to learn all about the history of legislation and sex education in Pennsylvania and continue my learning in my favorite subject — but it is far more than that.

Westtown’s Independent Study has challenged my writing, reading, researching and critical thinking skills. I’ve noticed considerable improvements in many disciplines as a result of my deep study of sex education and legislation. I’ve worked with the Chair of the History Department, English Teachers, and Health Experts.

This is a unique program I would recommend to all students who are pursuing a unique discipline. Current students should seize this opportunity for next year. Few schools allow for students to explore their interest in a particular subject the way Westtown allows. Not only have I been able to learn more through research, but I also have a plethora of resources and faculty who have been incredibly supportive and helpful.

Read More: Learn How To Contact Your Representatives!

The Independent Study Program is one of the hidden gems on our campus that needs more recognition. I hope prospective students have a chance to hear about how students are excelling in different disciplines through this program.

This week I wanted to hear from all my fellow peers about unexpected ways they’ve improved their academic and research skills through Independent Seminar. What skills have you improved?

Image from Westtown School “Student Life” (www.westtown.edu)

 

The Mystery of Airline Loyalty Programs – Silver

At the end of my last blog, I mentioned how airlines have become so adept at differentiating their products that in a foreseeable future, a greater level of customer-driven customized flight experience can be expected. In fact, not only is this phenomenon a significant trend in the airplane seat development, it also represents a unique feature of the industry’s revenue composition. When I was building an eco-hotel business model in my Business & Society class back in the fall, I noticed that approximately 10% of hotel revenue comes from sources other than regular room rates. This seems quite reasonable: after all, meals, laundry, mini-bar expenses are often an important part of travelers’ hotel bills. However, I was surprised to find out that according to a consulting firm IdeaWorks, the ancillary revenue of traditional U.S. air carriers (non-inclusive of those low-cost competitors like Southwest) had 11.9% share of their total revenue in 2015, meaning that in average, when a major U.S. airline sells a $1,000 ticket, it would later get $119 more revenue from somewhere else. While these numbers seem to illustrate the power of the “customization” I have previously mentioned, they indicate something far more profound. A deeper look into IdeaWorks’ report suggests that nearly 55% of U.S. major airline ancillary revenue came from “sale of FFP (frequent flyer program miles).” In fact, aside from the seemingly excessive baggage and seat selection charges, airlines increasingly found frequent flier programs to be just as lucrative. Arguably, the proliferation of loyalty programs in airlines has become a definitive feature of the industry, shaping the modern-day air travel landscape in so many ways.

AAdvantage_logo_2013.svg.png

American Airlines AAdvantage Program

Continue reading

Deploying Polaris – Week Two

A lot of people have asked me about Polaris since its launch. The question is usually brought up during brief conversations:

A person would ask, “Hey Kevin, how’s Polaris going?”
My reply is always very terse: “Pretty well!”
“Good! When is it going to be available?”
“Very soon…”

Continue reading

Press Release: Introducing Polaris – Kevin

WEST CHESTER, Pennsylvania — January 20, 2017 — The Polaris Team today announced Polaris, a revolutionary departure management system designed specifically for the Weekend Program at Westtown School. Polaris replaces the current SignUpGenius®, an event organizer, and offers a responsive design, Google® integration, Alchemy℠, manageability optimizations, data analytics along with many other features.

Continue reading

What Makes Snapchat a Success? | Kevin Wang

Snapchat is an instant messaging application created by three Stanford students. Messages sent in Snapchat known as “snaps” are self-destructive images and video clips. The concept is that users can send snaps that last up to 10 seconds after they are opened by the receivers. Since its launch in 2011, Snapchat has achieved an active user base of 150 million users with more than 9,000 snaps being sent every second. Aside from the statistics, Snapchat has successfully incorporated emotion into instant messaging and brought forth a new lifestyle for teenagers and young adults. After all, what is it that makes Snapchat so successful?

Continue reading

Chip On Our Shoulders – Roger

In last week’s blog post I briefly introduced my study in the topic of personnel management. We went through some basic concepts, and I shared a personal story in experiencing teamwork with all of you. This week we are going to talk about different personnel structures within a company and how they can help a business grow. There are some traditional ones that y’all might be familiar with, and there are also some innovative ones that have become more popular during recent years. Without further ado, let’s get into it.

Continue reading