Mandarin Immersion Senior Profile: William Pang

The Capistrano Valley Class of 2024 will include the first ever graduates of the Mandarin Immersion Program. CUSD Insider asked the seniors to reflect on their time with the program and share what they have planned for after graduation.

William Pang

William Pang of the Mandarin Immersion Program at Capistrano Valley High.
Photo by Steven Georges/CUSD Insider


When did you start in the Mandarin Immersion Program?

2011- 1st Grade

Why did you join the Mandarin Immersion Program?

I joined the Mandarin Immersion Program because my mom thought it was an amazing opportunity. When I was in 1st grade, I didn’t know that much about the program, but I was put into it and quickly became friends with my classmates and learned to love it. Around 4th or 5th grade, I realized just how amazing of an opportunity it was and was thankful to be put into it.

What are your plans after you graduate from CUSD?

After I graduate high school, I plan to attend a 4 year university to study international business or sports marketing.

What other activities were you involved with in high school?

In high school, I was involved in various clubs and extra curriculars. Some clubs that I was involved in were National Honor Society, National Chinese Honor Society, CSF, volleyball club, basketball for all OC (a club where we donate basketball supplies to local elementary schools), and Chinese culture club. Some extra curriculars that I was involved in were volleyball, basketball, and ASB.

What was your favorite part of the Mandarin Immersion Program experience?

My favorite part of the Mandarin Immersion Program was in first grade, when we were misbehaving since we could not understand directions and Ms. Loh had to speak to us only in Chinese. She would call Ms. T and have her yell at us and tell us to behave ourselves. This bonded us as a class because no one knew what Ms. Loh was saying and we thought that it was hilarious for her to have to call another teacher to discipline us since she could only speak in Chinese.

What aspect of the Mandarin Immersion Program surprised you the most?

One aspect of the Mandarin Immersion Program that surprised me the most was how diverse our class was. We had a great mix of people from all types of backgrounds and races.

How has the Mandarin Immersion Program prepared you for life after graduation?

The Mandarin Immersion Program has prepared me for life after graduation by teaching me another form of communication. With my knowledge of the Chinese language, I am able to communicate with a larger population. I am also interested in studying business internationally, so being able to speak Chinese has given me a step in the right direction.

How will you use your Mandarin knowledge in your daily life?

As someone who wishes to study business internationally, being able to speak Chinese will help me communicate with others. I also wish to study abroad in China and immerse myself further in their culture. Being able to speak Chinese while studying abroad will make it much easier and will allow me to focus more on the cultural aspects rather than linguistics.

What advice would you give other students considering joining the Mandarin Immersion Program?

Do it! You not only are able to learn another language that is one of the most commonly spoken languages world wide, but you will also create many lasting friendships and deep connections. Our MIP class has now become a family. We are so close and have known each other for so long that we can almost predict what someone will say. Even those who have left the program are still connected with us.

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