Lily G. is a junior at SYA China and a blogger for our Campus Reporter Program. She comes to SYA from St. Catherine's School (VA). Read more of her work throughout the year here.
Living in China for my junior year, a seemingly hard decision, was nothing but easy for me. Sure, I worried about how I might lose some friends back home and would miss my family. But I thought an opportunity like this meant so much more. I thought, the friends I might lose would not be true friends anyways. I thought that I may get homesick every now and then but learning a new language and culture is totally worth it. And boy did I realize that I was so right. Deciding to live in China for a year was easily the best decision I have ever made. I love Beijing with all my heart and plan on coming back for college. I've made so many friends that also yearn for adventure and discovery of new cultures.
Right now you probably have so many questions racing through your head. If you are anything like me you've probably read the SYA handbook 20 times and watched every video on the SYA YouTube page. In my opinion, you aren't going to be able to prepare for what to expect from your SYA experience in China. Everyone's experiences differ extremely. You just have to be confident enough to jump on the plane and expect something wonderfully life-changing, whatever that may be for you.