Big Cheng was born in 1990 in Shaoyang, Hunan, she films her life and work when she embarks on a career in several Chinese leading internet companies, including Alibaba, NetEase, and Meituan, as a wheelchair user with a severe case of polio since her early childhood.
The first time meeting Big Cheng, one would easily be infected by her brilliant smiles. She is just like millions of employees, punching in when she arrives at work, sometimes overloaded with tasks at hand, always eager to put on some delicate make-up, delighted to go out on the street or off on a sightseeing tour when she is off work.
The difference is, she has to do it all in a wheelchair.
Big Cheng, who contracted polio at an early age, opened up her world when she started to share her ordinary life on vlogs, which have attracted millions of views to date.
Not to be defined as “top few” by disability After going viral on Bilibili, a Chinese equivalent of YouTube, Big Cheng started to get more media attention. But she only accepts interviews on the condition that they must not adversely affect her work and vlogging.
“I just moved here and I can’t let my new boss think that I’m goofing around. I need to lay low.” Big Cheng says with a smirk and a “shut-up” gesture.
In August 2019, Big Cheng left NetEase in Hangzhou and moved to Shanghai to work at Meituan. Though she looked a bit worn-out with everything that needed to be done for this migration, she spent all her free time at night making a video entitled “Would you regret leaving NetEase and its piggy farm of a canteen?” which attracted 343,000 views.
In China’s IT industry, NetEase has been widely known for its offer of scrumptious canteen dishes, hence the tongue-in-cheek nickname “piggy farm” first among its employees and later out into a much wider netizen community. In her vlog, Big Cheng brings the audience on a tour around the famous NetEase Staff Canteen and her workplace. Towards the end she also shared some of her advice on career development. Waves of praise followed in the comment area: “Such an outstanding lady!” “Able people can go wherever they want!” “Truly envious. I want to work in companies like this, too!”
Her life experience, one in which she drove herself right through university and postgraduate studies before she landed herself first in Alibaba and then moved to NetEase and Meituan, seems “outrageously successful.” Not so she thinks, as opposed to a popular belief that she is “one of the top few high-achievers with disabilities”....
Login to read the full article. SIGN UP HERE FOR YOUR FREE MEMBERSHIP
If you are already a member, welcome back! LOGIN HERE
Article and photographs by Zhang Ximeng
This story is part of a series of articles published as an exclusive editorial exchange between China Press for People with Disabilities & Spring Breeze and ABILITY Magazine