Tuesday, April 8, 2008

how to squish college students

1. Have a tiny campus. Pretty, but tiny.

2. Put students 4 - 8 to a small room (2 - 4 bunk beds per room). Leave no room to hang clothes up and make students hang them in the halls. Don't allow students to pick roommates. Force them to stay in the same room all four years.

3. Turn off electricity in all dorms at 11 pm every night. Close the library at 10:30 pm. Force students to go to off-campus cafes if they want to study past 1 am or so (after their computers run out of battery).

-1. However, the food is amazingly cheap. Any given meal at one of the campus canteens -- a serving of jiaozi (dumplings) with rice porridge, five baozi (meat/veggie filled buns), a stir-fried dish and rice, a steamer of xiaolongbao -- usually costs less than $1USD. I eat so much.

-2. The Beida students are really nice!! One of the best things about being here is getting to meet them, eat long meals with them while attempting to communicate in Chinese, party with them...

I'm quite enjoying being at Beida. I'm just glad I'm an international student, with the privilege of a room to myself and 24-hour electricity.

And despite being at the top university in their country--and having studied like crazy to get here--the students here almost universally dream of going to the United States to study.

We went to see some Peking Opera. It was interesting.

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