Class of 2019: Haicheng "Tina" Zou

By: Mr. Chris Souther, Upper School Science Teacher
One of my favorite artists, Andy Warhol, once said, “They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself.”

Well, that explains why Haicheng “Tina” Zou, an International student from China, is always in the middle of things at Cape Henry. She has always been a proactive force in our community, and her zest for learning and answers comes from a view of the world that is grounded in both the local and global communities she lives in.

“My overseas study experiences have taught me so many things that are idea-changing and value shaping. I am fortunate that I get to learn and grow up with so many inspiring friends and teachers around here at Cape Henry. I could not become who I am today without being exposed to different voices and ideas. Most importantly, I’ve learned to express my compliments, appreciations, and love to other people more often.”

Tina has translated her view of the world to others at CHC and is always looking for opportunities to see change up close and in person. She has traveled with her classmates to important events and locations in the U.S.

“Although I did not travel internationally, I went on the John Hopkins Model UN trip and Feminist Leadership Conference trip. The best memory I had was the whole group sitting in the Senate Building having a conversation with a democratic Senate representative. It was such an inspiring conversation that everyone was thinking about what we can do to make Cape Henry a better community afterward.”

Thinking of others comes naturally to Tina who values her friendships and relationships with the current student body. She is involved in clubs and has played sports at CHC as a way of forming life-long bonds and memories. She offers this advice, “don’t hesitate to try new things and appreciate all the opportunities CHC offers.”

Two of her favorite teachers are Ms. Self and Mr. Palmer, whom she credits with helping her navigate CHC and beyond. “They give me advice beyond academics, for example, about American culture and college applications. They are the human beings that I love to share my stories, struggles, and basically everything with. Sometimes I feel like they know me more than I know myself.”

So what’s in the future for this ambitious senior? Tina has decided to attend Chuo University in Tokyo, Japan because of its emphasis on developing global awareness and cross-cultural mindset, which are the very skills she hopes to develop in college. As far as a career is concerned, Tina has definite plans on this issue. “Working for the United Nations/UNESCO has been my dream since 8th grade. Another reason that I want to work for the UN is that I want to pursue my goal of promoting and preserving cultural heritage. I am currently leading groups doing the promotion of a traditional Chinese Opera, an intangible cultural heritage of China.”

The CHC community wishes Tina well and can’t wait to see what changes the world has in store for her and what she has in store for the world. Maybe Andy Warhol was on to something!
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