An 84-year-old grandfather will be among the 10 million candidates taking part in China’s annual university entrance exam on Friday.
It will be the fourth attempt for retired Huainan worker Yao Keliang at the national standard test known as gaokao, reports South China Morning Post.
There has been an influx of repeat exam takers since 2001 when the Chinese government decided to remove restrictions which required candidates to be under 25 and unmarried.
Yao said he has prepared well for the grueling annual test, which is the only criteria for getting admitted into higher education in the country. He has reportedly been spending at least two hours studying each day, limiting leisure activities such as playing cards.
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Yao admitted that studying that much for his age has been “brain-consuming,” and said he had to “accumulate knowledge little by little.” He added that his most difficult subject is mathematics.
If he passes, he is planning to attend either Peking University or Beijing Normal University, two of the top universities in China.
Yao, who has been nicknamed “gaokao grandpa” by Chinese netizens, previously made headlines for taking the exam in 2012, 2014 and 2018.
Unfortunately, his scores failed to gain him entrance into the schools of his dreams.
This year will be a bit different as his granddaughter will also be taking the test.
Yao stated that he is not as competitive as the younger students, although he is pretty confident about doing better this year.
“But I have taken the test before and I am experienced. What’s more, I know what gaokao looks like and I am not nervous at all,” he was quoted as saying.
While he has been persistent over the past few years, the elderly man said this will be his final gaokao whatever test results he gets this year.
“I can’t do something ending up without an achievement. I must do some remarkable things,” Yao noted. “What I am doing is a poetic example of living and learning.”
Featured Image via The Paper