EHHS Sophomores Accepted to College-Level Chinese Program
Posted on 01/25/2023
Sophomores Accepted to STARTALK Program

Three East Hartford High School sophomores will have the opportunity to earn college credit after being accepted to the prestigious STARTALK Program at the University of Connecticut. They will participate in a year-long program beginning this month focused on Chinese culture and language immersion. The program is entirely free of charge for students.

Jorge Miranda, Lily Zaikarite and Georgina Contreras are currently taking Chinese 3. With the support and encouragement of their teacher Jerry Zhu, they submitted their applications for the program, which included writing an essay in English and an essay in Chinese.

Georgina Contreras said, “I felt pretty confident, but the Chinese essay I was worried about because we had to use a whole bunch of different grammar structures.”

All three students who applied were accepted to the program and have committed to participating. They will be the first East Hartford students to do so.

“I was so ecstatic because I was not expecting myself to get in,” said Jorge Miranda. “I felt proud of myself because I never would have expected to get into such a prestigious program as this one.”

The program is divided into three modules running through December. The highlight of the program is a 60-hour, two-week intensive residential program at UConn’s Storrs campus this summer.

“I’m really excited about the learning process and the second module where we get to go to the campus,” said Lily Zaikarite.

If students complete all three modules successfully, they can earn three college credits.

Chinese Teacher Jerry Zhu said, “I’m so happy for these students. In maturity and work completion, they are way ahead for sophomores. We should all be really proud of them for taking on the challenge of a college-level course.”