Speech by Haoran Liang, Valedictorian for the 2014 Summer Session of the EAP Program:
Good afternoon, Ms. McAlpine, teachers, staff, students, homestay families and guests!
It is a great honor to have this precious opportunity to speak in front of you. On this special occasion, first I would like to take a moment on behalf of myself and my fellow students to express my deep gratitude to all of our teachers who have contributed to improving our knowledge of English. Also, we need to say thank you to QSoE staff, who have made a great effort ensuring that all activities are well designed and that Canada becomes a home away from home for all of us. We want to thank the socio-cultural monitors as well. I have to say that I really enjoyed those awesome activities and trips during these 12 weeks.
Two days ago, my classmate Nako told us that she doesn’t want to go back to Japan because she enjoyed studying English at QSoE, and she thinks that 12 weeks is not enough. I agree with her, and it is amazing that I have studied in this program for almost one year, but I continue to feel that I am still learning new things every day. I appreciate the intensive study environment. Moreover, I have very competitive classmates who help me to maintain my passion and motivation to learn English.
English is not the only thing I have improved while I studying here. I expanded my friendship network; I met you, smart, creative, and enthusiastic students. I became very active and through joining the school activities I got the chance to discover Canadian culture and the Kingston community. I learned to work as a team, and it helps me to understand other cultures. I enjoyed discussing and cooperating with my classmates. I also started to think critically when when doing research.
We are an international community. We are here because we have the same dream – to learn English, but also to learn how to live independently. Even though, today, we will be going in different directions, but remember, today is a new start with new opportunities. You are going back to your countries with the knowledge you have learned here. No matter what your dream is for the future, Queen’s spirit can always carry you to get there. No matter what path you choose to make your dream come true, you will be the best that you can be. And remember, don’t stop, you must keep moving.
Congratulations, EAP Summer 2014!
Haoran will be continuing his studies in Bachelor of Commerce at Queen’s School of Business.