During Thanksgiving Break, Chinese freshmen Emma, Shirley, and Ziyi attended the Thanksgiving dinner hosted by TEAN, the organization that manages the Vassar-Fudan Hybrid Program this semester. The students made roasted turkeys, Shepherd’s pies, corn bread, and bonded with one another in a series of activities.
While we were waiting for dinner, the host asked us to think about things we were thankful for. We don’t celebrate Thanksgiving in China, but I really like this tradition. It reminds us of the good things in life, and we especially need them this year. For me, I am grateful for all the people who have helped me getting through my first semester of college. It was so different from what I had expected, but I always feel warmth across the globe from people at Vassar 🙂
This semester, I participated in the TEAN-Fudan hybrid program with other Vassar freshmen in Shanghai. However, as restrictions of the pandemic are still enforced, all of our classes have to stay online. In this situation, the thanksgiving activity was very meaningful to us. We cooked, chatted, laughed, and enjoyed so much seeing each other’s faces off the zoom screen. I am so thankful for this opportunity to connect with my Vassar friends! And I really hope we can go to campus and study together face-to-face next year.
Even though I’m studying remotely this semester, I still can feel the warmth that Vassar radiates. Faculties understand, support, and encourage us, and I barely feel left out in the Vassar community. During the dinner, the host asked us what we are thankful for. My answer was, “I am still alive in the pandemic, can spend more time with my family, and meet so many wonderful faculties and friends.” That night, I dreamed of lying on the lawn on campus with my friends and staring at the blue sky.