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Straight-A female Tsinghua student joins Marine Corps

(People's Daily Online)    09:08, January 15, 2020

Young female soldier Qi Yifei recently attracted attention up and down the country. She used to be a student at Tsinghua University, one of China's top universities, and now, she is a soldier in the Marine Corps of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) Navy, WeChat account of the military channel of China Media Group reported on Jan. 12.

A number of cute drawings showing life in the military camp recently went viral on Chinese social media. Qi Yifei, the artist behind these pictures, has also received increased attention thanks to her experiences.

In 2018, Qi was admitted into the Academy of Arts & Design of Tsinghua University with a high score in China's college entrance examination, the gaokao. However, in her second year at university, she decided to join the PLA.

Although Qi's mother didn't agree with her decision at the beginning, it was her dream. Qi had been physically and mentally preparing herself since she entered university, taking part in activities such as running 20 kilometers, cross-country running, and walking in the desert.

Qi not only wanted to be a soldier, but also a member of the Marine Corps of the PLA Navy.

It was not strange that a Tsinghua University student decided to become a soldier, but that a person who had always wanted to join the army was enrolled at Tsinghua, said Qi.

Although she became the soldier she had always wished to be, Qi felt uneasy about joining the army without the approval of her parents.

On the day before the ceremony marking the completion of the training for recruits, Qi secretly drew the pictures of her life in the recruits camp, hoping to share her growth with her mother by sending the pictures in a letter. However, she never sent the letter.

Qi was awarded the title of outstanding female solider because of her excellent performance and finally got to wear the white Navy uniform at the ceremony, marking the completion of the training.

When she turned around on stage during the ceremony to receive the award, she was surprised to find that the person who was arranged to present her award was her mother, Peng Lingwu. Both mother and daughter cried on stage.

"I agree with my daughter's choice now, as I've seen that her life in the camp was colorful, and that the army has a galaxy of talents. It is a better platform for personal development than school," noted Peng.

Several days after the ceremony, Qi moved to the Marine Corps of the PLA Navy, where she always wanted to go. When she arrived, she received a letter from her mother that read as follows:

"Feifei, when I saw the video of your training in the camp, and saw the female soldier crawling forward under the burning iron grids, I couldn't help but shed tears. It was not until afterwards that I knew the girl under the iron grids was you. I didn't know my daughter had such a strong will. I wept several times watching the video. I felt a mix of both happy and sad. Also, I was ashamed of myself and started to understand your choice. You are one of the new post-2000s generation. As your mom, I might not have been able to understand you in the past, but I firmly support your decision now… Daughter, mommy loves you."  

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(Web editor: Hongyu, Bianji)

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