SHIJIING GONG: Exchange student, new experiences

May 18, 2017

Shijing Gong first came to Stratford from China two years ago.

One of the things she first experienced when she came here were the football and basketball games.

“I had never been to so many games before, and they were just really impressive,” she said.

Shijing said it was hard to come to America after living in another country her entire life.

“It was really hard, especially for me because I’m here as an international student so everything’s different,” she said. “The classes are so different, and being friends with people was not that easy, but I still have really good friends here.”

Shijing recalled the most embarrassing moment from her time at Stratford, from when she was doing a psychology assignment.

“Last year, I was in the [Psychology] class. We had to do a project [where we] stood on chairs and read out loud during lunchtime,” she said. “Everyone was looking at me, and I was so nervous and embarrassed, I was like ‘don’t look at me!’ ”

Out of all the classes she’s ever taken, Shijing said Biology was her favorite. Out of all the classes she has taken at Stratford, she likes English the most.

Shijing added that Dr. Ann Dromsky and Mr. Bobby Stecher are her favorite teachers.

“They’re so patient and nice to me, and they teach me a lot not only in [class], but also in how to be a better person,” she said.

Unfortunately, Shijing has also been hit with ‘senioritis.”

“The very beginning of senior year I worked really hard, but since I got (accepted at the University of Washington), I’ve been like ‘OK! I’m done! I need to leave,’ ” she said.

One thing you may not know about Shijing is that she’s very outgoing.

“I’m not shy like you think, but because I’m in a different environment, it’s [not the same]. But I’m actually really easy to be friends with,” she said.

When asked what she will miss most from Stratford, Shijing said ‘the Eagles’ spirit.’

Shijing has stayed with Ms. Millie Jones , of the Learning Support Center, and her family.

“They’re so nice to me and I learned a lot about the culture [of America],” she said. “This year, I went to Dr. Caldwell’s wedding, and it was very impressive as it was my first experience of an American wedding.”

Shijing plans on attending her dream school, the University of Washington after she graduates.

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