Xi’s let­ter ex­cites stu­dents

China Daily (USA) - - ACROSS AMERICA - By LINDA DENG in Seat­tle lin­dadeng@chi­nadai­lyusa.com

A group of Wash­ing­ton state high school stu­dents who re­turned from the trip of a life­time to China in Oc­to­ber got an­other treat on Tues­day.

Luo Lin­quan, Chi­nese con­sul gen­eral in San Fran­cisco, Chief Con­sul for Ed­u­ca­tion Yang Jun and Con­sul Li Guang­peng paid a visit to Lin­coln High School in Ta­coma.

Luo was on a spe­cial mis­sion, to for­ward a let­ter from Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping to stu­dents of the school, who had re­turned from their 11-day trip last month.

Last Septem­ber dur­ing his stop at the school on a state visit to the US, Xi gave stu­dents shelves of books, left two ping pong ta­bles and a set of pad­dles and balls and sur­pris­ingly in­vited 100 of the stu­dents to tour China.

About 30 stu­dents who rep­re­sented the 100 stu­dents, Lin­coln High School Prin­ci­pal Pat Er­win and teach­ers wel­comed Luo and the del­e­ga­tion to the class­room.

Er­win read the English ver­sion of the let­ter to stu­dents, a “heart­warm­ing and great mo­ment” ac­cord­ing to stu­dents.

The let­ter, signed by Xi and first lady Peng Liyuan, said, “Young peo­ple are the fu­ture and hope of a coun­try, and friend­ship be­tween the peo­ple of our two coun­tries needs to be car­ried for­ward by the younger gen­er­a­tion. We hope the stu­dents will share their ex­pe­ri­ence and im­pres­sions of China with peo­ple around them, so that more Amer­i­cans will get to know China bet­ter.”

Stu­dents also wrote a let­ter of ap­pre­ci­a­tion to Xi, in which they wrote down their fond memories of China. They hoped Luo would for­ward the let­ter to the pres­i­dent.

“The in­flu­ence of the trip is far-reach­ing and the in­ter­ac­tions be­tween peo­ple will con­tin­u­ing,” Luo said.

Jackie Knight, a 12th grader, said though the life-chang­ing ex­pe­ri­ence that they got more con­fi­dence and know they can do bet­ter.

De­vunce Bin­ner, a 10th grader, said he is still email­ing with the friend he made in Fuzhou and looks for­ward to go­ing back to China in the near fu­ture.

Al­most all of the stu­dents said they were in­ter­ested in go­ing back to China to study. Yang said the ed­u­ca­tional ex­changes be­tween the two coun­tries will pro­mote a bet­ter un­der­stand­ing and friend­ship be­tween the two na­tions.

To qual­ify for the trip, stu­dents needed a min­i­mum 2.5 grade point av­er­age and three let­ters of rec­om­men­da­tion from teach­ers. Fi­nally, 56 girls and 44 boys were selected and the group in­cluded sopho­mores, ju­niors, and se­niors.

Xi is no stranger to Ta­coma. He vis­ited the city in 1993 while serv­ing as Com­mu­nist Party Chief of China’s port city of Fuzhou and over­saw the sign­ing of a sis­ter-city agree­ment be­tween the cities a year later.

LINDA DENG / CHINA DAILY

Luo Lin­quan (in blue tie), Chi­nese con­sul gen­eral in San Fran­cisco and Lin­coln High School Prin­ci­pal Pat Er­win(to right of Luo) join stu­dents after they shared their ex­pe­ri­ences tour­ing China, at the school on Tues­day af­ter­noon.

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