Despite 20 failed attempts at gruelling exam, 50-year-old businessman tries China's gaokao again

Mr Liang Shi from Chengdu, Sichuan will be taking China's national college entry exam for the 21st time in June.
Mr Liang Shi from Chengdu, Sichuan will be taking China's national college entry exam for the 21st time in June.PHOTO: CHINA DAILY/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

Most of us dread exams, but Mr Liang Shi from Chengdu in Sichuan has made it his life's work.

At age 50, he will be sitting for China's gruelling national college entry exam, or gaokao, for the 21st time in June.

Mr Liang, who runs a construction supplies business, said he just wants to fulfil his dream of going to university.

He first took the exam in 1983 when he was 16. He failed it four times after high school, then gave up and started a successful business.

In 2001, the gaokao lifted its age limit of 25 years. He took the exam every year after that, even after his son graduated from university.

Last year, he scored more than 400 points out of 750, which allows him to attend a second-tier college, but he wants to better the score.

His aim is to attend the mathematics department at Sichuan University. To do that, he needs at least 620 points.

He will be competing with about 9 million students for a place in college. The exam will be held from June 7-9.