For Anny Lin ‘23, beginning her sophomore year at Chatham Hall meant navigating both travel restrictions and COVID-19 precautions to return to Virginia from Fujian, China. But the Lin family was determined that she return to campus.
"When COVID-19 was spreading around the world, it was extremely difficult to choose between staying in China for online classes and going to school,” said XiuZhu Lin, Anny’s mother and head of the supply department at Fujian Minjiao Printing Company.
“We chose the latter for many reasons. First, the School adopted extremely strict and comprehensive measures to ensure the safety of children. Second, during the outbreak of COVID-19 in March, the School’s timely and complete response measures and the extraordinary care for international students moved us very much. And third, Anny loves Chatham Hall and sincerely wishes to return to campus and join the whole community.”
While it was Anny’s choice to attend boarding school in the United States, and specifically Chatham Hall, her parents were thrilled with the decision.
“During the application process, we could not bring Anny to visit schools in the United States and we had a very limited understanding of American high schools,” said Yong Lin, Anny’s father and a judge in the People’s Court of Mawie District, Fuzhou.
“Some introductions to various schools on the internet are cold, but the Chatham Hall Admissions Office staff were warm and friendly, which became not only a reference for choosing the School, but also a measure for whether our child would be valued after arrival.”
For the Lins, the Chatham Hall tradition of pairing an Old Girl with a New Girl became incredibly important as Anny’s Old Girl not only introduced her to Chatham Hall, but American education as well.
“We are able to learn more about the School life in Chatham Hall from Anny and through the social media of the School,” said the Lins. “We are especially glad to see Anny participate in School activities and know about what she has learned.”
Much like the students at Chatham Hall, all of the Lins enjoy afternoon activity.
“Exercising with the whole family is our favorite hobby,” they said. “At four o'clock every afternoon, Anny and her mother go to the open space in the community to play badminton, basketball, and jump rope. When her father is free on holidays and weekends, he also participates. We do sports together and hold competitions, for example, whoever can jump rope the most times in one minute wins the competition. Anny practices basketball dribbling, shooting, and passing the ball with her dad. During the break, Anny tells us about School life and have a chance to chat.”
During this unusual school year, the Lins have warm wishes not just for Anny, but for all of the girls.
“We hope that all of the girls are able to receive good grade in their studies, to integrate with the Chatham Hall community, and to grow happily and healthfully.”