SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Michael Bushong, Newswire, David Smith, Tim Crawford, Kevin Benedict

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School Year Abroad Celebrates 20th Anniversary of its High School Study Abroad Program in Beijing, China

NORTH ANDOVER, Mass., March 25, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- School Year Abroad (SYA) president John E. Creeden, Ph.D. is pleased to announce the celebration of its 20th Anniversary of its high school study abroad program in Beijing.

School Year Abroad was the first high school study abroad program in the People's Republic of China with government permission to place students in host families for an entire academic year. In the summer of 1991, then SYA Executive Director Woody Halsey joined a Phillips Academy faculty trip to Beijing led by faculty member Ni Xiao-Min. During this trip Halsey explored possibilities for an SYA school in China.

The SYA Board of Trustees recognized the importance of the opportunity to open a school in Asia. In 1993, Halsey again scouted in Beijing to find what would become the home for SYA China: Middle School #2 Attached to Beijing Normal University (MS#2). SYA China opened with 18 students in August 1994. Since then, nearly 1,000 alumni have studied at SYA's school in Beijing. 

Current students and faculty had the honor of welcoming First Lady Michelle Obama to school during Mrs. Obama's recent visit to Beijing.

SYA will celebrate the 20th anniversary of SYA China — a historic moment not only for SYA, but for study abroad in China, with a reception and celebration on March 29, 2014. Guests from around the world will join the festivities. To learn more about SYA's history in China, visit

About School Year Abroad
School Year Abroad (SYA) is a nonprofit organization with year-long academic high school study abroad programs in China, France, Italy and Spain. Founded in 1964, SYA is the only secondary-level program which allows students to live with a host family for an entire academic year while earning U.S. graduation credits and preparing for admission to selective U.S. colleges and universities. The central elements of SYA, the homestay and an academic program emphasizing foreign language acquisition, ensure that students realize a mastery of the language and a deep understanding of the culture. Visit for more information.

SOURCE School Year Abroad

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