Etsuo’s corner: introducing XinXin

Editor’s note: Etsuo’s Corner is a weekly column for World & Nation by Etsuo Fujita, an international student from Japan. Fujita features the stories of other international students or writes about his adventures and impressions as he learns about the cultures and customs of Guilford and his travels in America.



This week, I would like to introduce XinXin Zhou, a four-year international student and currently a sophomore. Here is her story, specifically her life and experiences in China and the reasons why she decided to study at Guilford College.

“When I was a high school student, I studied in the Shattuck St. Mary’s Beijing Bayi High School which was established by a Chinese public school and American private school. The high school was unique … (since) the school had Chinese military spirits and (an) American teaching style. For example, I lived in a dormitory and every morning, I needed to fold my quilt orderly just like Chinese soldiers do. If we did not do (this in the) perfect way, the teacher deducted student’s points. In addition, many military leaders graduated my school such as Chinese president Xi Jiping.

Next, my school is mainly for Chinese students who want to study abroad after (they) graduate the school… Most of my classmates went to the Canada, Ireland, Japan and the U.S. Before I came here, I … (had the) chance to study in Minnesota for a month as a required program for all students. I learned TOEFL, SAT, and arts over there. I think the experience was a good chance as a practice … (for) studying abroad…

In China, many students want to study abroad and it is becoming common for Chinese students. Therefore, it is difficult to take SAT in China because registering is very competitive. The test center in Hong Kong can fit 30,000 people at the same time and it would be very crowded and noisy. This is why I went to Japan four times. Surprisingly, I have visited your university to take (the) SAT (International Christian University where Etsuo studies in Japan).

When I entered my high school, I (already) knew that I would not go to Chinese universities and then, I decided to enter a college in the U.S. The way I found Guilford College is that my adviser from my high school had chance to meet to staff in Guilford and learn… about this college. Then my adviser recommended …Guilford College (to me). I liked the environment at this small college. In addition, this College has Community service programs and this is what I wanted to experience… (most) here.

For me, studying abroad is (also) a chance to understand more about my country. I must get (out) of of China in order to have a comprehensive view of it. I love my country and I will go back to China after studying.”

In my opinion, it’s interesting how Zhou found Guilford. So far, I have also been asked by several student:  how and why did you decide to study in Guilford College, a small liberal arts college in North Carolina? The answer is that my university in Japan has a partnership with Guilford College and this college is known as small liberal arts college which has a good environment to study. On the other hand, Zhou’s high school did not have a partnership with Guilford. It can be difficult to find Guilford without a school partnership, so it must have been lucky for her that her adviser could meet the staff of Guilford. For both of us, this small campus and its class sizes were very attractive. I look forward to enjoying the rest of my fall semester here!