Two years ago, 100 students from Tacoma's Lincoln High School visited China as guests of President Xi Jinping, something that had never been done before.

This week, 25 students from China’s Sichuan Province are spending a week in Western Washington, sponsored by the U.S.-China Youth and Students Association.

Tacoma's Haley Naparan said this week felt like she was back in China.

“We’re going down memory lane again,” said Naparan, who spent Friday showing high school students from China around Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium.

“We’re here on this earth to connect with people,” said Naparan, “So why not continue that?”

In addition to the trip to the zoo, the students visited Mt. Rainier Friday. Next week they’ll attend classes at Lincoln and Steilacoom High School.

For many of the Washington students visiting China, it was their first trip to a foreign country, some hadn’t been on an airplane before.

Now Haley Naparan is about to start at Pierce College. She wants to eventually work at a non-profit and plans on traveling the rest of her life.

“It makes you want to grow, it makes you a better person,” said Naparan.