Marianas Variety

Last updateWed, 23 Aug 2017 12am

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    Tuesday, August 22, 2017-7:25:50P.M.

     

     

     

     

     

Saipan mayor mulls student exchange program with China

SAIPAN Mayor David M. Apatang on Wednesday met with 11 visiting Chinese students and expressed his willingness to consider a cultural exchange program with Chinese schools.

Currently, the mayor’s office has been facilitating cultural exchange programs with Japanese and South Korean schools and groups.

Variety learned that the visiting Chinese students are here on an education tour.

Monique Kramer, general, manager of Discover Saipan, said she organized the group’s visit to the island. She said she also organized the visits of three previous student groups.

The visiting Chinese students are on island for a 10-day cultural exchange program.

The Chinese students arrived here on Aug. 1 and will leave on Aug. 11. While here, they visited schools, historical sites, the Saipan Senior Citizens Center and the animal shelter of the mayor’s office.

They are from Beijing and their organization’s name is “Shun Shun Step Aboard.”

During their meeting with the mayor, the students asked him about the island environment, culture, education system and same-sex marriage.

The students said they were impressed with the island’s clean surroundings and how the CNMI government has preserved local culture while pursuing economic development.

“You enjoy your stay and take pictures then show them to your parents and friends,” the mayor told the students.

Saipan Mayor David Apatang answers questions from the Chinese students.  Photos by Junhan B. Todiño

Apatang also encouraged to students, who are in high school, to pursue their education and obtain a college degree.

The mayor’s office provided each student a copy of Don Farrell’s “Saipan, A Brief History,” translated in Chinese, which are gift items from the Marianas Visitors Authority.

The students then visited the animal shelter and donated money.

With the mayor during his meeting with the students are his special assistant Henry Hofschneider, student exchange program coordinator Yuki Kishimoto and grant writer Luise Villagomez.