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Where girls become ladies

By Luo Wangshu in Beijing and Zhou Lihua in Wuhan  (China Daily)

13:55, April 30, 2012

"Every girl loves beauty, the only problem is knowing what beauty is," says Wu Xiaohuan, a student at Wuhan Textile University.

"A real lady has both her outside appearance and inner beauty," the 19-year-old adds.

Originally from Qianjiang, in Central China's Hubei province, Wu, an avid dancer, became aware of the Etiquette Club for Ladies two years ago and simply thought of it as another way to make friends and have fun.

"But it brings me much more than that," Wu says. "Now even my parents are very happy that I joined the club."

Wu says she has also benefited from the practical tips on how to be a lady.

"Since I joined the Etiquette Club for Ladies, I never lean back or cross my legs when I sit down."

Established in April 2009, the Etiquette Club for Ladies is a student organization at the higher vocational college of Wuhan Textile University, arguably the first one in the country. It aims to promote self-discipline and an appreciation of Chinese culture among female students. The club currently has 62 members.

The club provides eight courses, a total of 216 hours a year, to its members, including studies in Chinese classics and an introduction to art, as well as deportment and practical skills.

The club has a strict selection process, which includes appearance, moral and academic performance, communication ability and an interest in the arts and traditional Chinese culture.

Wu says that in the club's second year nearly 500 students applied, but only 56 were admitted.

"I definitely would like to expand the club, but it is expensive to run, so I have to keep it at its current size," says Guo Weiqi, the founder of the club, adding that as a vocational school, he would like the university to provide more financial support to the club.

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