BOSTON, MA -- Stanislav DeLaurentiis of Plainfield, a junior at The Wardlaw+Hartridge School in Edison, won the second-place award at The 13th Chinese Bridge Speech Contest for U.S. high school students on March 31 at the Confucius Institute at the University of Massachusetts in Boston.

Contestants were divided into three groups: Basic, Intermediate, and Advanced. Stan was placed in the Advanced Division with a group of competitors who spoke fluent Chinese. Some of his opponents had experience visiting China and one had visited there three times, while another completed an internship in China. Other competitors started learning Chinese as early as 4 years old, and two went to a Chinese immersion school.

“This competition was truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience. It allowed me to be surrounded with people who share my love for learning the Chinese language and its culture. Furthermore, my performance in the competition is less a recognition of me as an individual, and is rather a testament to the excellence of the Wardlaw+Hartridge Chinese program,” Stanislav said.

“Stan did an amazing job presenting the interesting material and demonstrating his true passion for the language and culture. He was excellent in all three stages: speech, Q&A, and talent show,” said Ms. Hua Liu, the W+H Mandarin teacher who accompanied Stan and his family at the event.