Should I Learn How to Speak Chinese?

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“He Sun, failed PI, and is crying in his room”. “No way, why is he crying, it’s not a big deal at all, it’s just PI; another dumb inspection that they surprise us with every other day”. I attend Culver Military Academy, a college preparatory school that uses military framework as an element for leadership and direction. PI, or personal inspection of our dorm rooms, occurs daily, and passing every PI is definitely not that high on the student priority list. Yet, He Sun is crying about failing. What struck me the most that day was how much pressure He Sun and his family placed upon him in order to succeed within the system. What is a “blow off” inspection to me, as an American, is a life changing blemish to He Sun, a Chinese. I always knew that He Sun worked harder than most of us, but I never realized how seriously he took his opportunity at Culver. He Sun said, “I just don’t want to let my family down”. This situation also made me realize that the reason why He Sun is crying for failing PI, is the same reason why the Chinese are rapidly becoming a world power, and in the near future will be more powerful then the United States. Although this was only a snapshot of He Sun’s culture, it showed me that the Chinese put an enormous amount of pressure upon themselves in order to further their education. What if Americans took their education this seriously? If all Americans realized the situation at hand would we continue to get beat by China and other nations in the never ending race for world power? The answer is definitely not looking optimistic; I don’t believe that I will ever cry about PI. Yet, the values that He Sun showed me on that slightly odd Sunday morning have changed my life for the better. Not to a point where I will now cry after failing PI, but to a point that has caused me to reevaluate my decisions on a day to day basis. Don’t get my wrong; I am not saying that I’m lazy and never go the extra mile, it’s just now, because of He Sun, I always will.





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