Philippines and China: Beyond the sea dispute

Father Ari C. Dy, SJ, is president of the Xavier School, a Chinese-Filipino Jesuit school with campuses in San Juan, Metro Manila, and Nuvali, Laguna. He holds a doctorate in the Study of Religions from the University of London's School of Oriental and African Studies, with a dissertation on Chinese Buddhism in the Philippines. He is the author of numerous publications on Chinese-Filipino culture.
TRACING ROOTS. At least once during their stay in high school, students of Xavier School visit China to ‘trace their roots’ and undergo character formation. Photo courtesy of Fr. Ari C. Dy, SJ

‘There are voices suggesting that Chinese Filipinos will side with China in the event of war. This is truly unfortunate, because there is no doubt in our minds that we are Filipinos who love this country.’

Xavier School is probably the only high school in the Philippines that brings more than 300 students to China during the academic year.

Unlike summer programs that are not academically credited, the Xavier China Experience (XCE) takes place during the 3rd academic quarter in November. Full credit is given for intensive Chinese and the other regular subjects. Teachers in our partner institutions handle the Chinese classes, and our own team of Xavier teachers accompany the students to China to serve as both teachers and supervisors of mentoring groups.

On top of academics, each XCE includes special trips to highlight particular aspects of China’s development. The youngest group in Grade 8 has been going to South China (Guangzhou and Fujian) to “trace their roots” and to undergo character formation. The Grade 10 boys go to Yunnan and experience the richness and diversity of China’s cultural minorities and natural wonders. The Seniors stay in Beijing and visit Shanghai to experience both ancient and contemporary China.

After 10 years of experience organizing XCE, it is now a required program at Xavier School. All students are expected to participate at least once in the course of their high school education. Financial aid is available for those who need it. This just goes to show that XCE is now a hallmark of Xavier education.

Read the rest of the article here.

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