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VOLUME 15, NUMBER 1 -- September 1, 2008

Olympic Spirit Spans Globe

Read teens from Afghanistan, Australia, China, England, Jamaica, Germany, South Africa, Wales, and the USA, including Arizona, New Jersey, New York City, Oregon and Wisconsin.

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Zhu Qin Zhe holding the Olympic torch in Longyang, China, before the games began.

Photo courtesy of Youth Journalism International.

From China:

A Lasting Impression


Longyan, Fujian Province, CHINA - For a moment, I held the Olympic torch. When the Olympic flame arrived in our city last May as part of the Olympic Torch Relay Ceremony, I felt privileged to be there to see it.

But it delighted me even more when I was given the chance to hold the real torch. A friend of mine who was one of the torch bearers allowed me this chance. That moment left a lasting impression on me.   – By Zhu Qin Zhe


Thrilled to Host the Games

Longyan, Fujian Province, CHINA – Literally, it was just ... amazing. With a once-in-a-lifetime event taking place on their doorstep, every student in China would miss the 2008 summer holiday to watch the world’s finest athletes competing with each other, scooping medals into their bags for 17 days. It was even more thrilling that China ended up topping the medal tally, claiming more gold than any other country. – By Zhu Qin Zhe



The Summer of Superheroes – By Emily Mongan



Lightning Strikes Jamaica

JAMAICA - The intense Olympic fever is over, but Jamaican citizens remain ecstatic. The phenomenal performance in the Bird’s Nest stadium in Beijing, China by the Jamaican athletes is like a virus that’s infected everyone in the nation. I was and still am in awe that a tiny island called Jamaica – my home – could captivate the attention of the birds in the nest in Beijing. – By Tamari Miller

Why I Love Michael Phelps

Carteret, New Jersey, U.S.A. - I already know the results, but my heart is racing and I can barely breathe. The nervous tapping of my foot has increased from a steady, legato beat to an intermittent staccato nuisance. “Yes!” I holler. Every part of me is on fire. “We did it again! We won!” A cloud of euphoria envelops me, my extremities are tingling and I am unable to do anything but gab to everyone within hearing distance every detail of the amazing race.

Why all the excitement over the U.S. men’s Olympic swim team, my colleagues wondered.

Four years ago, I wasn’t interested in the swimming races at all, so why the sudden change of heart? The answer is simple, two words – Michael Phelps! – By Shekinah-Glory Dhanie-Beepat


Olympics Bring Unity

Tucson, Ariz., USA – Positive cross-cultural encounters happen when people from all around the world come together for one common goal.

I believe that is what the Olympics does.

– By Mariah Pulver 

A 'Pretty Admirable' Showing From Australia

AUSTRALIA - There's a strange tendency for Australians to equate brawn with brilliance, and the most recent Olympic Games in Beijing sent a charming national quirk into overdrive. Bronze? Legend. Silver? Demi-god. Gold? The Greatest Person On the Face of the Earth. Ever. 
In other words, we love our sport, but we love our players more. – By Alex Patrikios


Can Britain Meet Expectations in 2012?

Dinas Cross, WALES – As Beijing waved goodbye to the Olympic flame, Britain could only think of itself. Now, after what seems like one of the most successful Summer Games ever, we have the colossal task of following it up. But, being Britain, sitting beneath China’s shadow is not a viable nor acceptable option.

It may be four years until 2012, but already Britain has caught Olympic fever. – By Hope Dowsett


TV Provides True Competition to Olympics


New York City  – There is only one reason why I did not see any footage of the Olympics: Every time the Games were on, something better was on TV. – By Jenieze Shields


There's no time like the Olympics

 – By Brice Birdsall


The True Meaning of the Olympics

Meschede, Northrhine Westphalia, GERMANY – In essence, the Olympic Summer Games are a stage for the world to present itself.

This year, Beijing was a platform for many things. – By Katie Grosser



United Behind Our Athletes


East London, Eastern Cape, SOUTH AFRICA – As a South African teenager, I realize the great honor of the Olympics. Due to our country's previous apartheid regime, South Africa was banned from 95 percent of international sports from the 1970s to the early ‘90s.

Being a country with 11 different cultures and languages, sport is also one of the few things that unite us all, regardless of the still-existing racial tensions of today.

There was never a prouder moment than when our men's relay swimming team beat the world record at the 2004 Olympics, or when Natalie du Toit was the first amputee to qualify for able-bodied Olympic swimming.

Needless to say, we were expecting great things. But then, disappointment is part of the world of sports. – By Mariechen Puchert

Beijing Olympics Bring Pride to Afghanistan


Kabul, AFGHANISTAN – Watching the Beijing Olympics at home in Afghanistan, my countrymen and I got a wonderful gift from the Games: pride.

We watched as four Afghan athletes, including one woman, took part in the international competition, representing our homeland, and brought home our first medal ever in the history of the Games.

It wasn’t easy.  – By Edrees Kakar


The View From Turkey


The Olympics mean something different to everyone. I live in England but I got to watch the 2008 Beijing Olympics with family and friends in Turkey. I found out what opportunities the Olympics brought to Turkey and formed a better opinion of what the Games mean to me.  – By Hatice Soykan


A Teen Olympian Who Has a Lot in Common With You and Me


Some people wait their entire lives to achieve their life goal. Some, however, have seen their dreams come true at a very young age. – By Lauren Haslett


Beach volleyball at the Beijing Olympics

Wen Xin/ Youth Journalism International

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