He attended Delia International School before immigrating with his family to Vancouver, Canada in 1992. The youngest of a three child family, he has older twin sisters.It was understood that after the 2007 Miss Hong Kong Pageant ended, Nicole continued to remain in contact with Second Runner-up, Loretta Chow (周美欣), who introduced her to Lai Lok Yi.
At first his family lived in Richmond before settling in Port Coquitlam.
After attending one semester at Douglas College, he transferred to University of British Columbia majoring in Mechanical engineering.
During college Ma joined an acting troupe that would perform sketches.
After graduating from college in 1998, Ma and his entire family decided to return to Hong Kong.
Hoping to find something more of his interest he sent out over 70 resumes but only received a response from TVB for an interview notice to their 14th Artist Training Class.