China: Around The Nation

China’s national exam top scorers grab attention ... for their looks, charm and athletic prowess

Great looks. Outstanding athletic abilities. Charming personalities. Oh yes, and brains, too

PUBLISHED : Monday, 26 June, 2017, 3:51pm
UPDATED : Monday, 26 June, 2017, 4:20pm

Scores from the all-important National Higher Education Entrance Examination, or Gaokao as it is known, were released over the weekend and those who garnered the highest scores grabbed nationwide attention – and not alway for reasons bearing relevance to their academic excellence.

Gaokao: how one exam can set the course of a student’s life in China

Zha Zhiyuan, from Guiyang No 1 Middle School who scored 700 out of 750 in the science major in the Gaokao in Guizhou province, broke the stereotype that top scorers were geeks were all brains and no no looks, reported.

“His eyes are big and his eyebrows broad. He looks educated and refined. He is a good-looking young hunk!” the report said.

Zha is also good at basketball, singing and is active in many school activities.

If at first you don’t succeed: Chinese college hopeful, 50, makes 21st attempt to pass notorious entry exam

Xiang Yuanfang, from Gaoxin No1 Middle School, earned the highest score in the liberal arts major in Shaanxi, but local media paid more attention to his looks, dubbing him “the best-looking Gaokao master in history”.

Xiang, who earned 686 points, is 1.83 metres tall and very good at basketball, mountain climbing and body building, the Huashang Daily reported.

However, Xiamen No 1 Middle School pupil Chen Sixuan, who score was the highest in the science major in Fujian province, made his name online not because of his grades but several pictures of him wearing dresses and a wig during a school sale.

Chen told that he wore the women’s garments to grab attention for the class sales. His hobbies include street dancing, swimming, table tennis and jogging.

Xiong Xuanang, the Beijing No 2 Middle School pupil who scored 690 out of 750 in the liberal arts Gaokao, earned nation wide respect after calling attention to the gap in opportunities between urban and rural pupils. He told the that his achievement was due in large part to his privileged upbringing in Beijing as the child of diplomat parents.

He said pupils from rural areas simply could not enjoy the same advantages as urban middle-class children.