Today was the first day of classes. The class rooms are pretty much the same as what we have back at UMD. Typical class rooms with either long tables and chairs, or desks. The rooms have projectors, and the rooms are about the same size as our smaller classrooms. I'm sure that the university also has large lecture halls. We took a course in E-business and another course in culture today.
It was interesting to learn about how massive the population is in China, and how little of it is actually reached by the internet (26% of the 1.2billion citizens are reached by the internet). Once all of China can actually access the internet, it will be even better for business than it already is. The culture class was taught by our very own Dahui Li. This was really interesting because we got to ask about our views about Chinese culture and either have them corrected, or confirmed. We also got to learn why things are the way they are. I think that the biggest difference in American to Chinese culture is that Chinese culture is more about context, where as American culture is very literal and straight to the point.
After classes, a few of us went to a local dance studio to practice/watch some breakdancing. Alex and I took part in the practice, while Bailey, Courtney, and Danny came to watch. This was truly amazing to me. The fact that we can come across the world and meet up with nearly complete strangers across a language barrier, but still be welcomed to share space and time with them to exchange dance is truly beautiful. While I can't say that this is purely an influence of Chinese culture, as it also has to do with the Hip-Hop culture, it is truly moving to know that people can be so welcoming. I will definitely be heading back to the studio to practice with these new friends.
After practice, Alex and I went to eat at a hotpot restaurant. We got to try frog. To me, I thought it had more of the texture of a boiled chicken, but with the taste of fish. It wasn't bad, but it also wasn't my favorite. During the dinner, there was a guitarist/singer who came in to sing to the restaurant, as well as ask people if they had any requests. This hasn't ever happened before, so it was very intriguing to me.
Here are a few pictures from the day:
Group picture in the Nankai University Business School lobby
Classroom picture from our first class
Picture just outside of the studio we visited
Eating some frog