Name: Puneet Sharma
University: Shanxi Medical University
"Colleges are places where pebbles are polished, and diamonds are dimmed."
The transition period from high school to college is crucial in every student's life. For me, it was an even more impactful time considering that I was moving to China, a totally new place. Before getting accepted at college in China, I knew very little about the country and the people. This is part of the reason why I chose China for my higher education. I have always been interested in Chinese culture, its rich history, and the lifestyle.
I saw the pictures and the university website to see what my campus looked like, and it looked decent to me. A month later, as I stepped out of the cab with my suitcase, looking at the north entrance of my university campus, I am sure I gasped. The campus looked much better in person than the picture, clean and tidy, overflowing with young students and youthfulness, flourishing with study and bright ideas.
The university campus is very safe and quiet, apt for an institution dedicated to medical sciences. All four entrances are guarded with barricades, automated arm gates, and cameras. As soon as you enter the campus, lush green plants, fresh grass, and trees greet you. It is a sight to enjoy, especially during the Fall season, the entire campus becomes golden yellow. As you walk forward, you approach the library, My second home. If sleeping in a bed were not a compulsion, you'd most likely find me in the library all the time. Five-story tall and perhaps the most significant infrastructure on campus, my campus library boasts numerous books, electronic records, a studio, and more.
The closest thing to heaven for a studious person.
Behind the library is a large field, directly overlooked by the administration office building. On either side are the classrooms and labs, followed by the sports field. The school campus is well built, ensuring that every facility is the shortest walk away and can be reached through multiple routes. One such route to my classroom goes through the university supermarket, just under the Canteen. A place always fragrant with delicious food and appetizing snacks, bakery, fruit shop, and café! What more could a person want. Just outside the university campus, across the street, is what we call "The Snack Street." An area dedicated to the most scrumptious Chinese food, street food, snacks, juice and coffee, ice cream, and restaurants. Most of the students eat here, especially the international students. The Snack Street is a great place for us to try new Chinese dishes, savoring the flavors and spices.
The restaurant owners and shopkeepers are very warm and kind, and they know each international student by their face. It is so exciting when they try to communicate with us in English, a friendly gesture. One of the places that I visit daily is the 百度咖啡店。 Anyone who knows me is well aware of my obsession with coffee. After trying a fair number of cafes around the campus, I found this shop perfect for my palate. The girl who works there and I also share a beautiful friendship, and she now remembers how I like my coffee.
The university campus is built very close to other shops, supermarkets, malls, and markets.
It is in a very convenient position so that if you want to visit the nearest mall, you can either go by bus, hire a bike, or walk for 10 minutes and enjoy the sights of other universities along the way. The nearest supermarket is 万科。 A perfect place where you can find everything. Hairdressers, Shopping, restaurants, café, and fast-food shops like McDonald's and KFC. I visit 万科 twice a week. It is a great place to be at; you can find elderly Chinese people dancing and exercising outside the mall. They always ask me to join them.
Also, even in my peak youth, I can't match their levels of energy and excitement. The campus is 10 minutes walk away from the garden, where I often go to enjoy nature, meet people and just be myself. There is a lake too, which is open for boating in the summer season. The temple corridor hosts older people sitting, talking, and sometimes playing traditional Chinese instruments. I consider myself lucky to have experienced this Chinese lifestyle in person. It has become a memorable experience that I will cherish throughout my life.
Along and around the campus, you will come across people selling caramel popcorn, roasted nuts, chestnuts, and fruits. The environment outside the campus is always joyous and cheerful. Inside the campus, you'll see students studying, walking and laughing, rushing to classes. All the students are very kind and friendly, always ready to offer help. In the evening, you are most likely to come across groups of students dancing and roller skating. I want to emphasize skating because I have witnessed students perform extraordinary skills and tricks effortlessly. It is a hot topic in many Chinese universities and very encouraging too. Chinese students are always working hard and becoming better, both in class and on the track field. I think there is so much to learn from my Chinese classmates.
Even a full-length book won't be enough for me to describe my campus and my love for my university, for China, and for my lovely Chinese friends. But I hope with this article I managed to convey a small amount of how beautiful and exciting life is on the campus of a Chinese university. To experience college life is an important part of student life, and to experience that in China adds to the fun and excitement while also adding value to the academic life and career. I'm happy that I chose China for my education, a decision in the right direction. China has become my second home.
I Love China, and I love you.