Female Marine Returns to University, Aspires to Help People

October 31, 2018  Editor: Liu Yanmei
The Only Female Marine Returns to Peking University for Her Master's Degree
Song Xi [China Women's News]


A female marine of the Chinese navy who returned from the army to pursue her master's degree at Peking University told interviewers about her story recently.

Song Xi is a student at Peking University. She joined the army and became the only female marine in the navy's 25th fleet on escort missions in the Gulf of Aden in her third year in college.

At the symposium held during President Xi Jinping's visit to Peking University on May 2 this year, Song, as the only student representative, gave a speech and reported to Xi about her study and military experience.

President Xi put forward four requirements for young people: patriotism, inspiration, seeking truth and practicing in earnest. Practicing in earnest emphasizes the need for the younger generation to put what they have learned into practice and be proactive.

"The idea of 'practicing in earnest' touched me so much I made it my goal in the future," Song said.

Song became a graduate student majoring in clinical psychology this term.

Undergraduate study made her realize that she could not help others solve problems without more systematic and in-depth learning and training.

Therefore, she chose to pursue further study in clinical psychology with no hesitation and selected an adviser who is known for having high requirements in academic training, in the hope that she could be more solid in her academic cultivation.

"It is hard to find a clinical direction, as it requires not only the study of knowledge, but also the practice, so I must study harder," Song introduced.

In addition to daily study, there are many other things for Song to do now: to be on duty in the psychological consulting room; teach a class on military theory for freshmen; and participate in more activities as the deputy secretary of the Communisit Youth League Committee of the college.

Meanwhile, there are plenty of invitations to social events for her, yet Song turns down most of them.

"I have a principle for doing things. That is, either what I do can bring something to others, or I can achieve personal growth in so doing. If neither of two can be achieved, it would make no sense to me, and I'd rather reject it outright," Song explained. 

She was impressed by her time staying with the children at the events, believing that her time spent there "made sense".

During last summer vacation, she attended a summer school, where she told stories and sang for the local primary and middle school students.

"I think it would be great if my words could have something of an impact on shaping their values," Song said.

Although her life and study at Peking University is already colorful enough, the military experience has impressed her more.

She gained a lot during her two years in the army. The biggest thing she's learned was to "be considerate".

Song says she used to be a person who cared about herself most and often forget other people, but now she has the instinct to take other people into account.

The enhancement of collective consciousness and the cultivation of altruistic thinking have made Song's communication with others more harmonious.

"There are other benefits of being a soldier," Song continued, "for instance, now my spine will be straighter and I will exercise more self-discipline."

Singing is one of Song's favorite interests. As the former leader of the student chorus at Peking University, she had won two gold medals for China in the Eighth World Chorus Competition of Latvia.

"After coming back from the army, my teacher told me that my singing has improved a great deal," Song said.

Song has always stressed that she used to be a very casual person who did not want to live such an intense life. After all these years, her ideas have changed.

Right now she holds it that being occupied is meaningful, as it allows her to have a sense of fulfillment and makes her feel more secure that way.

Looking back on her enviable and unusual experiences, Song believes that all boil down to a combination of efforts and luck.

She also gave some advice to freshmen: You don't need to be anxious about your life plan. As long as you have a complete and correct value, you will be on the right track. Song has a pretty simple and clear plan for her future: to be a happy person and benefit more people with her professional knowledge.

(Source: China Women's News / Translated and edited by Women of China)

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