SHANGHAI: Successful entrepreneurs have surpassed pop stars as college
students' idols, a recent Fudan University survey has found.
In the survey, which sampled 150 students from different grades and
departments in September and October, 96 chose successful entrepreneurs as their
idols, 91 added scientists and scholars to the list, while only some 75 opted
for stars of stage and screen.
The results toppled the old perception that young college students are most
impressed by the stars of shows such as Supergirl Competition.
Considering the extraordinary lengths many student fans go to to generate
support for TV talent show stars, such as parading in the street with placards
promoting their favourites, the results come as a surprise.
Fudan's students seemed not to be influenced too much by popular TV shows and
new stars, despite the latest Supergirl, Shang Wenjie having graduated from the
university last year.
"It's normal for students to have traditional ideas about the qualities an
idol should have they think of idols as people who have made a great
contribution to society. These kinds of ideas aren't easily changed by TV
shows," said Zhen Zhiwei, a second-year post-graduate student who conducted the
But students do have new standards for selecting idols. Some students voted
for ordinary people and even fictional characters, such as Harry Potter.
"It reveals the diversity of students' standards," Zhen said. "Under the
influence of pop culture, some students now view fictional figures as their
idols. They see the same qualities in those fictional figures as in other real
"We are also delighted to see that more and more students are concerned with
the roles ordinary people play in society. Wealth, social status and fame are
not the only standards they use to select idols."
The survey also revealed that most college students do not want to be idols
for others. According to the survey, 57 per cent of students do not want to be
"The result can be regarded as a good illustration for why most of them
choose successful entrepreneurs and scholars as their idols," said Zhen. "They
have high expectations for idols, so they believe that to be an idol means
having to take on more responsibilities and pressure than other people, and they
are not ready to take so much responsibility yet."