Sang Lan, one of China’s best gymnasts who was paralyzed in an accident, has started her school life in Peking University beginning from the fall semester.
Sang was seriously injured after landing headfirst on July 21, 1998, when she was practicing vaulting horse at the Goodwill Games in New York. With little hope to regain the ability to walk, Sang has been retained to wheelchair since that day, with limited use of her arms and hands. But the 17-year-old girl never gave up her dream to get enrolled into a university to continue her schooling.
Now, this optimistic and adamant girl has been admitted to the School of Journalism and Communication of Peking University. Her long-cherished desire to go to college has been realized.
In the past three miserable years, while receiving treatment, she made great efforts to study middle school courses. As a result, she received the diploma of middle school early this year.
After Sang’s repeated application, Peking University, in accordance with an agreement reached between the Ministry of Education and the State Sports Administration, formally admitted Sang as a four-year college student, majoring in journalism. On the day that her new school began, Sang Lan, accompanied by her parents, hurried from their home in southern Beijing to the campus situated 20 km away in the northwest suburbs of Beijing. The university has made special preparations for Sang’s convenience, but Sang made no other demands beyond that.
Sang’s mother said that before the vaulting accident, Song had always busied herself with trainings and contests. After she returned from New York, she became very enthusiastic in study and worked very hard. She even can use a computer skillfully now.
“Get up from where you fall is the most ordinary thing for a gymnast. And it’s my motto,” Sang said. “I’ll arrange my time scientifically and work hard on my studies so as to be a winner in life.”
As a former athlete, Sang keeps winning the honor for the nation in mind. “If I can get better, I’ll play table tennis and get ready to compete in the Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games, ” she said.
According to her medical group of the Beijing Fraternity Hospital, they’ll continuously adjust the treatment plan according to Sang’s physical conditions. By keeping her limbs, urinary system and respiratory system in good condition, they’ll do their best to improve her health and quality of life.
(china.org.cn by Chen Lin, September 27, 2002)