Teen sensation Wang Junkai heads to college

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Wang Junkai, Chinese boy band TFBoys' oldest member sings with a kid in a recent celebration event with fans. [Photo by Yan Dongjie/China Daily]

Singer Wang Junkai, from Chinese boy band TFBoys, is at a turning point.

Following a massive 18th birthday celebration with his scores of fans, the teen idol is completing his freshman military training and getting ready to face college life.

"I didn't have the time to figure out how I really felt about becoming 18 as I've been too busy with work and studies …But I have been longing for this day," Wang, the oldest member of his band, penned in a diary entry that was released to the public.

"It's like a ceremony, after which I'll enter the world of adults and say goodbye to my teenage years."

On Sept 21, Wang's fans put together nearly 100 activities, such as flying hot air balloons labeled with his name in Turkey, to mark his 18th birthday. There were also more than 30 related events that included beneficiaries such as African elephants that were being adopted to protect them.

Wang, widely known as China's answer to Canadian singer-songwriter Justin Bieber, became the first Chinese celebrity to have his name "sky-typed" and seen over the Hollywood sign in California, according to his fan group Kaijia. The fans hired five pilots to mark the sky with trails that formed Wang's name, a heart and the number, 18.

Other birthday celebrations included adopting endangered marine animals and renting a satellite that will carry his picture "around the universe".

Wang, who is attending the Beijing Film Academy, says he is looking forward to his new student experience but will also "remain true" to himself.

He tells his fans he has been getting used to dormitory life with his new classmates.

"I will be studying acting but I will keep practicing singing as well, and I still have plans to hold concerts in the future," says Wang, adding that he will aim to balance his work with his studies.

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