Day 28: Why I Came to Microcampus

Microcampus has finally reached its end. Just 4 weeks ago, on this very day, we had gotten on a plane and flew to a place where none of us had ever expected to end up in...

Why did I sign up for Microcampus? Who knows? Maybe it was the sense to try something new out? Maybe it was to explore the stories from my brother? I don't remember why all I knew was that I was incredibly excited for a whole new experience of learning... I remember receiving the email from Mr. T when the lists of names first came out. At my debate class, I opened up the results and eyes scrolled down the entire list. There it was, the six letters on the screen ended up promising so many more experiences to come. I had expected some sort of new education where we would be thrown through classes that were going to be taught by us just self-exploring the village of Xizhou and asking questions. This basic idea would later on to be shown to be incredibly inaccurate. However, now I understand.

It is amazing how much one can change within a month. How different my views can become. I used to wonder why I was here. What I need to do. What I am supposed to do. Always about the goal, our expectations. However, in Xizhou, it all changed. Now it is more about the process, the experience, the growth. What does it matter where you end up if you just walked the same path as everyone else? What truly separates a sunrise from a sunset? If you looked at both, could you tell the difference? But when we truly are at the moment, what makes the sunset different from the sunrise? The events of the day. It is not because a sunset is more beautiful than a sunrise, it is because a sun sets after a long and eventful day. That's the lesson I want to take on with me. The world may value the result, but who do you want in charge of your life? 

This month has been a ride of a lifetime, it has allowed all of us to appreciate and notice all those new details that normally would be brushed aside. Why is it that we have relied everything on technology? Sure, a smartphone may be incredibly useful however what if the phones were too useful? If we have such a heavy reliance on our inventions, who truly control us then? Microcampus has opened up my eyes to many of the different dilemmas in the world. I used to think smartphones were not a problem; adults were just jealous or cranky about these new inventions. However, once I experience how much more I can gain from my life by just pulling myself away from the screen, I understand a lot of the outrage. 

Finally, there was the freedom. A hundred good choices may never be noticed, but one mistake will be forever remembered. That is why our entire current grade will never all be able to understand this experience. Microcampus allowed us to make our own choices, to decide who is in charge of our lives. That does not mean discipline should be thrown out the window, however, it does mean expectations and hopes of other people should be. When we were allowed to study what we wanted to do exactly, the projects became more enjoyable than it would have normally been at school. Teachers will never be able to satisfy the needs of all students unless they let the students choose themselves. When there is an issue between the two groups, neither side in Microcampus will sugarcoat it. When we have freedom, we will always have higher ups and lower downs. But the best we can do is try to climb out the valley as fast as possible. 

Our experiences will now last forever. It may fade, but it will never disappear. Microcampus will always leave an imprint on both me and the community I have spent a month in...

Goodbye Microcampus... Goodbye Xizhou...


After Microcampus, my life has been greatly affected by the new and different experiences that were offered during Microcampus. From being able to work efficiently and effectively to having meaningful conversations with (at first) strangers around me. I know understand the difference between "giving" and "trading" and the awareness of impact. How that perhaps people in need aren't necessarily always wanting gifts, but instead a trade, a bond, an understanding between two drastically different people. I also realized how much could be gained from just viewing the world around us and not just our smartphones and computers. For once, I noticed how the buildings were set up in a certain way or how some certain art was covered, I feel this type of education has been more effective than any other program I have ever tried out.