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'I chose to be a soldier': Film academy graduate

By Cao Zinan | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2021-11-24 15:36
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Shang Lin before and after enlisting in the People's Liberation Army's rocket force. [Photo/Sina Weibo]

Do you prefer being a movie star or joining the army if you graduate from a renowned film academy? While many people may choose the former, Shang Lin chose the latter.

From a cute girl taking selfies with her mobile phone to a soldier equipped with a rifle, Shang, 22, shows one life choice of China's Generation Z.

Shang, a Beijing native, graduated from the Beijing Film Academy last year. She then took the civil servant examination in Beijing and was hired to work in a government office. But with a dream of joining the army, she chose to sign up for the People's Liberation Army after she had only been in office for two months.

"Young people should always do something meaningful, so I chose to be a soldier in my youth," Shang said proudly.

A photo of Shang Lin during training in the army [Photo/Weibo]

To join the army, her biggest obstacle was that her body fat rate didn't reach the standard. Shang has always been thin as a kid. She strengthened her body by exercising, and finally adding 10 kg to her weight in a short period of time.

On the training ground, her every move is done in a standard way. Stone-faced and tenacious, now the short-haired Shang and the previous long hair beauty are like two different people.

The 22-year-old woman can handle a tough environment and high-intensity training with verve and courage. "Born in the best of times, females should not be defined. We need to boldly step out of our comfort zone," said Shang.

Shang Lin poses for a photo when she graduated from Beijing Film Academy last year. [Photo/Weibo]

Days of military training don't feel boring to Shang at all. Instead, her passion and love for army life continues to grow, and she is proud of her identity as a PLA rocket force soldier.

Shang's story has attracted more than 260 million views on the social media platform Sina Weibo, China's twitter-like internet service as of Wednesday afternoon.

"A beautiful young film academy graduate chose to be a soldier than being in show business," one netizen commented. "Quite admirable."

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