Nutty Narwhals - Student Journals

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sydney01pd2020's picture

I came to Microcampus because I was interested in changing up my normal schedule, getting outside of my comfort zone, and learning about a different lifestyle and culture. This trip showed me how to try new things and do something you do not do normally. Because I learned how to do these things, it impacted me greatly.

cole01pd2020's picture

Before I came to Microcampus I wanted to come to get outside of my comfort zone, experience real China and mature as a person. While I still cared about what my first 2 reasons I was really looking forward to coming home to Shanghai more mature and responsible. I had this idea that I might go through some sort of transformation and come back different.

cole01pd2020's picture

Today is the last real day of Microcampus. Tomorrow is just a travel day. The month of Microcampus is coming to an end. I am going to miss Xizhou, but I am also looking forward to seeing my friends and family in Shanghai. We have to wake up at 5 in the morning tomorrow. Apparently the re-entry to Shanghai is hard, I do not know for sure. Although Xizhou feels normal, so will normal in Shanghai feel different? I do not know, but I know I am happy to see my friends and family from Shanghai for the first time in a month.

cara01pd2020's picture

When I first applied for Microcampus, I wanted to experience life in China outside of Shanghai. I wanted to see what it was like to spend a month in a more rural part of the country. When I came to Xizhou, I knew that I had to challenge myself in ways I do not usually. Over the past 4 weeks, I learned a lot about myself, China, and my Inquiry topic. 

shannon01pd2020's picture

Microcampus is a experience where a small group of students get to go and live a month of their life in Xizhuo, a village in southwest China. I was lucky to be one of those students. I came to Microcampus to discover the real me. I wanted to know what I am like without my family, without soccer, without everything I am used to. I came here to find out about farming and how farming has changed. I came here to become a better person. 

cara01pd2020's picture

Unfortunately, today is our last full day in Xizhou. Everyone finally has our work done, and the feeling of satisfaction is overwhelming(check out the picture above). From the beginning of Microcampus, we had Phase 0,1,and 2 Completed and Approved, and now that we are at Day 27, everything is Completed and Approved. Anyway, for lunch all of us ate out, so that we could say our goodbyes with the people we have connected with. After lunch, Mr. T bought us the ice cream that he owed us from Day 15 when he lost his one-sided bet.

sydney01pd2020's picture

Today, in honor of Mels birthday, we went to get our hair cuts at a local barbor shop. We were recomended to a place near Ran Yi Xian by Ms. Mai. Melanie went first to get her hair cut. We only wanted a little off just to be safe. The lady started cutting her hair on an angle, being very gentle. Once she was finished, Mel looked in the mirror. It just looked a little shorter but still even. Next I got my hair cut. For a straight 5 minutes, they were feeling and stroking my hair. When the lady finally starting cutting, it was almost like she was rushing.

yannick01pd2020's picture

Before the trip, I though that I came to Microcampus to step out of my comfort zone and have great experiences. I thought that I would step out of my comfort zone and talk to locals and always make connections. I was very excited to see china outside the bubble of Shanghai.

I wanted to learn more about my comfort zon and learn to break my barriers. Life has been very easy for me and I was not challenging myself enough before the trip. Therefore, I chose to go to Microcampus. I thought that I would be challenged a lot and brought to my boundaries.

cole01pd2020's picture

Today we had our 2nd room inspection. In the first room inspections my group got -1.7, I am still not sure if Mr. Tafel was joking when he gave us that score but we redeemed ourselves today. My room, the 3 guys got a 4.9 out of 5. If it was not for Yannick having a messy luggage we would have gotten a 5. We also had Mr. T's All Star Super Duper Whizbang Trivia Night, tonight. My group 2nd place. Every group had to wear some sort of costumes and all the groups were funny.

riko01pd2020's picture

The first reason I applied for microcampus was to step outside of the Shanghai bubble and also my bubble, which I had built up over the years of school life at SAS. In many of my classes at school, teachers often write for me to step outside of my comfort zone in my report cards. I thought that by going to microcampus, something would magically happen and make me confident enough to take risks. But to tell the truth, it was nothing like that. I struggled a lot, and had a hard time coping with the pressure sometimes.

riko01pd2020's picture

Today was our last full day. To say goodbye to everyone, we had lunch outside of Yang Zhuo Ran instead of having it inside like we normally do. Melanie, Joanne, Jie Ling and I went to old Town Snacks, which is the place where many microcampus students favor. They have a special dish called the "Tafel Fried Rice," named after Mr. T. After we ate, we said our goodbyes to the owner of the restaurant, who is a very nice young lady. Mr. T then had a special treat to offer for us, which was ice cream. I chose the milk and egg flavor, the most simple and plain one.

cole01pd2020's picture

We had our 2nd movie night tonight. We watched Ace Venture, Pet Detective starring Jim Carrey. I had seen it before but I was not dissapointed when I saw it again, it was still extremely funny. I always liked Jim Carrey movies, and have not been dissapointed by one yet. I was Ace Ventura for Halloween. The first movie night we had was also a Jim Carrey movie. We also had an intermission this time where we ate some cookies and moon pies. Thank you Microcampus and thank you Jim Carrey.

yannick01pd2020's picture

Today is the last full day at Microcampus. It is the day to say our goodbyes and pack our bags. Today everything has to be up to date ad completed. Tomorrow we are going home. I am very excited to see my parents and my friends back in Shabghai and can't wait to be home. However, I will miss the kindness of the people and the food of Xizhou.

joshua01pd2020's picture

I thought that I came to Mircocampus to experience life outside of the bubble, and to get out of my comfort zone more. I thought that I would not have to do much work here and still get to experience everything, but I was wrong. Another reason was so that I could be more independent and responsible when I go back to Shanghai.

I also wanted to learn more about China, and see how people lived their lives in a small village compared to a big city such as Shanghai.

joshua01pd2020's picture

Today is our final day of Microcampus, so we spent most of the day preparing to go home. Surprisingly it was not very hard to pack my bag because I just stuffed everything in it then jumped on it, so it was very easy. After I finished packing everything, I turned my keys into Mr. T and wrote my day 28 journal. Tonight is aslo the Jammies which I am excited for.

shannon01pd2020's picture

Today is the day I say goodbye to all my friends here in Xizhou. The hardest goodbye will be to Wang Le, he is a little boy who is in Si Feng Jie. His mom works at a restaurant and he is always there. I will miss him the most because he always puts a smile on my face whenever I see him. He also always sits with me when I come to his and his mom’s restaurant. He is 3 and is the person I have come the closest with him in the village. Another person I have come close with is Yang Nai Nai, She worked with Sabrine o her embroidery and I went with them every time.

ryley01pd2020's picture

At the beginning of the trip I was coming to Microcampus to learn about the economics of bamboo weaving in Xizhou, and at the end of my experience I was going to write a report on my findings. Now at the end of the trip, 28 days later, my reasoning for coming to Microcampus has changed significantly.

ryley01pd2020's picture

Today was our last full day in Xizhou. Today we went around the village saying goodbye to the locals which we had connected with. It was a sad occasion because it was today that we were fitting in all of our "lasts." Our last meals in SiFangJie, our last conversations with our Service Learning partners, our last walks around the town, our last bike ride, and (for me) my last meeting with the Wang Family. I found my eight favorite photos of my time spent with the Wang family and I had them printed.

sabrine01pd2020's picture

I spent one month in XiZhou. It was a great experience getting to know new people and getting outside of my comfort zone. 4 months ago I applied for Microcampus. With a smile on my face I hoped that I would get in. Based on all of the stories I have heard from alumni Microcampus students, I knew that this was what I wanted. At Microcampus, Mr. T's words of wisdom sounded like they would only impact my stay here but it has changed the way I think. With Mr. T's words of wisdom, I saw the things that I could fix about myself and it was easy. I want to thank Mr.

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