Julian Yee made headlines last year when he became the first-ever Malaysian to qualify for the Winter Olympics
The 20-year-old figure skater is a force to be reckoned with!
Not only is Julian a five-time Malaysian senior national champion, he also brought pride to the country when he won Gold at the 2017 SEA Games. Now he'll be representing Malaysia on the world stage at the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics!
But Julian's journey to the top hasn't always been smooth sailing... and that's why we love him even more.
Julian started from humble beginnings and has dealt with financial struggles from the start. He and his mum have both worked hard to achieve the seemingly unachievable, funding his own trainings, buying equipment, and seeking out coaches who could bring him to the next level.
As a teenager, Julian was looked down on in the international arenas but he continued to dig deep and defy the odds.
His story is an inspiration to Malaysians, one of grit, strength, and positivity!
Together with Samsung, Julian is telling his #DoWhatYouCant story. Here's what we learned from him:
1. Dream big... then actually do something about it
Representing your country and participating in the Winter Olympics is a pretty huge dream for a 12 year old. But that was Julian's goal, and he sure followed through!
In 2009, Julian joined the Korean Dream Program in Pyeongchang. The program inspired him to be a better athlete. 9 years later and a lot of hard work, Julian is representing Malaysia in the games.
2. Give thanks and appreciate everyone that helped you along the way
Despite his huge success as a pro athlete, Julian never fails to thank the people who have helped him on his journey. Followers of Julian's Instagram will know how often he posts his appreciation of the fans, friends, and family that made him who he is.
<3 you too, Julian!
3. Embrace setbacks and find another way to get what you want
You know what they say, where there's a will, there's a way! Both Julian and his family have made many sacrifices to get him where he is today. Did you know all his training fees, coaching, and equipment is self-funded?
Despite being the first Malaysian to ever qualify for the Winter Olympics, he still faces financial setbacks. The lack of training facilities and experienced coaches in Malaysia means that Julian has to train overseas, which is expensive. He splits his training between China, South Korea, and Canada as he cannot afford proper long-term training. Now that's dedication!
4. Always give your best in everything you do
While many of us focus on putting all our effort only into the things we enjoy, Julian believes that everyone should "strive to be better than who you were yesterday."
You may assume that school took a backseat while Julian started to pursue his career as a figure skater. However it's not the case! As a schoolboy, he was head prefect and house captain, all while skating competitively. Now, he's taking a gap year to focus on the Winter Olympics, but hopes to resume his university studies right after the games are over.
5. Take on life with a positive attitude
Even though Julian works super hard, he never takes himself too seriously and is always up to have fun. Whether good or bad, he believes in taking on life with a positive attitude. Every mistake is a lesson learned.
Inspired by Julian's story, Samsung has released a new short film that brings his #dowhatyoucant story to life
'Julian and his Magical Skates' was illustrated entirely on a Samsung Galaxy Note8, and tells the story of our inspiring Malaysian figure skater who defied the odds to make it to the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang.
Watch the awesome film here:
Julian will be competing on Chor Yat, the first day of Chinese New Year, and we can't wait to cheer him on!