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Easing hardship through education

[ 2009-05-20 11:38]     字号 [] [] []  
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URUMQI: Like other students from Xinjiang University, Yusanjan Abdiryim from Kashgar knows he will have more choices after graduation than were possible before.

The 23-year-old has already felt the hardship of life and places great value on what he has learned - and will learn. His father died in 2001 and his mother is a laid-off worker.

"I treasure my opportunity to enter this school, which helps me see the world in a different way," the junior said, adding that he receives subsidies from the university and has a part-time job to help pay for his studies.

Xinjiang will strengthen its efforts to foster more minority talent and educate more students from impoverished farmer and herdsmen households, said Tursun Ibrayim, head of Xinjiang education bureau.

"Improving the quality of education among ethnic minorities is important to Xinjiang's social and economic development," he said.

By the end of 2008, the region had 32 schools of higher education, including 11 colleges, 21 vocational schools, and eight adult schools of higher education that have a combined enrollment of 296,000 students, 101,900 of whom are ethnic minorities, according to the statistics from the education bureau.

Higher education changes lives, especially for ethnic minorities, Ibrayim said.

Abdiryim majored in resources and environmental protection, gaining a deeper understanding of nature and how to protect his homeland.

After entering the university, he went to an unnamed hill near Tianchi - or Heavenly Lake - in the region to research conditions every week for a year.

"I was shocked to see a green hill turning into barren earth due to overgrazing and lack of a sense of environmental protection among locals," he told China Daily.

Further education remains at the top of Abdiryim's agenda.

Xinjiang University has more than 30,000 students, including 4,100 in postgraduate programs and more than 350 foreign nationals, according to the statistics from the university.

Impoverished students in the school received more than 54 million yuan in subsidies and scholarships in the past two years, Anniwaer Amuti, headmaster of the university, said.

"Before 2010, Xinjiang University is expected to rank among the best comprehensive universities in the country and it will become a first-class university in Central Asia by 2024," he said.

(英语点津 Helen 编辑)

Easing hardship through education

Easing hardship through educationBrendan joined The China Daily in 2007 as a language polisher in the Language Tips Department, where he writes a regular column for Chinese English Language learners, reads audio news for listeners and anchors the weekly video news in addition to assisting with on location stories. Elsewhere he writes Op’Ed pieces with a China focus that feature in the Daily’s Website opinion section.

He received his B.A. and Post Grad Dip from Curtin University in 1997 and his Masters in Community Development and Management from Charles Darwin University in 2003. He has taught in Japan, England, Australia and most recently China. His articles have featured in the Bangkok Post, The Taipei Times, The Asia News Network and in-flight magazines.