“The word Aloha generally means hello and goodbye, however, it is also a lifestyle. It teaches us to be kind to each other, to treat others how we want to be treated, and to live everyday as bright and upbeat as the golden sun in Hawaii.”
- Yinsong Gao
Song is a fluent Mandarin speaker born and raised in Northeastern China. He immigrated to America ten years ago where he grew up on the Big Island of Hawaii. He currently studies at the University of Hawaii at Hilo. He will graduate in December of 2015 with a Chemistry degree. Song hopes to combine his study in medicine and science with his passion in conservation to better serve the community.
For a young child who didn’t know a single word of English when he first arrived, Song faced a tremendous amount of challenges and hardships to be where he is today. Through these difficult times he learned the value of perseverance, humility and generosity. By being a positive, personable and well educated person he received awards and recognition throughout high school and college. One in particular was the “Mr. WaveRider” award for the most dedicated, popular, and outstanding high school student – the most prestigious honor for a graduating senior. Other honors included citizen of the quarter award and Dean’s list awards.
Hawaii’s beautiful natural environment provided a unique “playground” for Song to enjoy outdoor adventures and water sports. Through different opportunities he acquired certifications in CPR, first aid, life guarding, as well as advanced open-water diving. Summer of 2015 is Song’s first internship experience with the NPS and SCIP. He is honored and thankful for such a great opportunity. By exploring the different national parks and forming meaningful connections with the different departments within the NPS, he is hoping to further advance his professional and personal growth within the National Park family.