Raine-Monet W. (Alumni-P)'s Journal

Change. Journey. Growth. These words are what make up Microcampus. During the very early stages of the Microcampus process, I had no idea what it would be like to be engulfed in the beauty of Xizhou, or to just to observe life at its best. In my eyes, Microcampus was not a vacation away from school for a month, or a rescue-trip to come to Xizhou and help the village of Xizhou. Microcampus was more meaningful than those petty purposeless goals.

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We entered as newcomers, we leave as Alumni. Today was the last full day of the Phenomena group's time here in Xizhou. Our schedule consisted of wrapping up, saying goodbye and preparing for our departure. Each student had mixed feelings today, sad to leave, but thankful for the unforgettable memories we made. We ended the day with our last evening activity - Jammies. This was a celebration of our love for our group, our friendship and the feeling of happiness we all had while here/ Personally, I know each student was happy to have this award ceremony, and we truly are family.

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Today was our Service Learning Sharing with the people of Xizhou that we are grateful to have met and thankful towards for their support during our stay. Below, you will find my reflection on what it was like to share our presentations of their stories with these wonderful people.
 
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Today I was feeling MUCH, much better than yesterday, and I was able to leave the nurse's room to help out my partners with Service Learning. I recovered throughout the day and got to spend the night in my own bed. It made me so happy that I was not sick anymore. Overall, the highlight of the day was the Trivia Night as the Jolly Ratchet Musketeer Robbers. Although we lost, Go Big or Go Home...

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Today was not the best day, I had a headache and was not functioning at 100%. I rested throughout day, and was feeling a little bit better afterwards. Despite my headache, I was able to finish my Final Product! I have uploaded my video and completed my written introduction and reflection. My hard work has paid off and I am feeling very successful.

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Today consisted of a lot of project work. Although the workload of Service Learning and Inquiry Project work seems very stressful, I keep reminding myself of the accomplishment I will feel after completing both of these projects. For Inquiry Project work today, Mr. T gave me his "Pearls of Wisdom" on my Final Product video. It is hard to believe that I started my 9-minute video only three days ago, and it is now already complete after I adjust certain aspects from Mr. T's Pearls of Wisdom.

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Today, Tiffany Z. and I met a really nice lady with the name of 杨奶奶, she is my Service Learning partner. She continously invited both of us to eat with her and although it was hard to understand her, the nice gestures and genuine love that she expressed towards us made me feel so happy. Her business is making shoe pads for the inside of your shoes, she has a small little stand.

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Today, Mallory B, Nicole F, Risa Y, Rachel B and I went to 大理 Old Town to celebrate the completion of both our Phase 3 and Phase 4 work for our Inquiry Projects. As we arrived, Mr. T told us the importance of being aware of our surroundings because pick-pocketers will try to take our phones if we are not aware.

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Discipline
 
Less: External control (adults, groupmates)
Providing regular reminders
 
More: In control of disciplining myself so that others do 
not have to
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Today, I had my first real experience with the herbs of TCM. I conversed with a man with the name of Mr. Yang and he told be about the production, distribution and process of the TCM herbs at the clinic. In my Phase 3 Workspace, I wrote about all of my interactions with locals in relation to learning about my topic. I've developed my topic of Healthcare and Wellness as experienced by locals into a more in depth research topic about the past, present and future of Medicine in Xi Zhou.

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Today was another relaxing day, and Mallory B. and I decided to go on an exploration walk to enjoy the village around us. We visited the Pavillion and the Cheese Factory. Mallory and I walked around Si Fang Jie and talked with locals we had connected with before. It's hard to believe that we have been in the village for two weeks already. We reflected on how Xi Zhou seemed so foreign to us when we first arrived, but now it's like our second home.

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Today is the third Saturday of Microcampus. I'm always thankful for the weekend on Microcampus because the change between the schedules is drastic. I feel much more relaxed and ready to tackle the next week. It was really rainy today (hence the title pun) and when I went out for lunch, it was pouring outside. Yesterday and today were the most rainy days of Microcampus. Today we are also going to do Service Learning.

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Hiking boots trudging, rain pattering, birds chirping. Sounds of nature.

Getting lost, only to realize that we were finding our true selves. Exploration.

Laughing, leading and loving. Friendship.

We have conquered the hike. 

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For Science, we were required to write about the positive and negative impacts on Xi Zhou due to one group of people. I chose to write about the locals, and my writing can be found below:

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I discovered the truth today. I discovered the truth that this is the second week of Microcampus and we are leaving in two weeks. I can not be afraid of this truth, but accept it. I have made memories here that I will hold dear to me for the rest of my life, and I have two more weeks to make even more memories. Although the date of our departure is overwhelming because this village is amazing, I will remind myself that life comes one moment at time. The month is zooming by and I need to continue to make sure that I am there to slow down and observe the value of Xi Zhou.

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"I'm not trying to receive money for my work, I just want the to help the people be healthy". These impactful words were spoken by Ms. Dong, a certified pharmacist whom I conversed with for my Inquiry Project work. She is a moral woman, and very selfless. During our conversation, I learned about her powerful contribution to society, both as a pharmacist and a citizen of Xi Zhou. Being a moral resident of Xi Zhou, she also said, "The quality of the medicine I purchase must be 100%, or else I won't buy it. I am very concerned about the people and keeping them healthy".

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10 days. The Phenomena group has inhabited Xi Zhou for a total of 10 days. Today is the first double-digit day of Microcampus. This frightens me, I never want to leave. Currently, we have visitors from Shanghai here observing our work. Ms. Fishman, Ms. Digges and Ms. Read are here to watch us do what we do for our inquiry work. As it is the beginning of the week, we are back to our normal WIPPIS schedule. Today I have a Teacher Support with Mr. T where I am conversing with Ms.

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I have never been so thankful for Down Time. Today is Sunday, and we are getting the most Down Time out of the entire week.This is our day to relax and breath, especially when we have been really tired. Although I am getting 9 hours of sleep every night, the work of the day is exhausting and I end up worn out at the end of each day. In addition to our extended down time, we also had our Week 1 Wellness Reflection. This reflection consisted of explaining and contemplating our Social, Physical and Emotional health throughout the first week of Microcampus.

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The weekend has arrived! Mr. T has declared this time a relaxing period, where we rest and rejuvenate our bodies to prepare for the next busy week. Today we had the World’s Most Boring Ever Chinese History Lecture, surprisingly the lecture was completely the opposite of the title is is given. I learned many new facts about Chinese history, and found it quite interesting. This lecture was an introduction to the beginning our Service Learning Project. During this project, we connect with an elder in Xi Zhou and ask them questions about their life.

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The Phantom visited us today, the Phantom of Room Inspections... After breakfast, Mr. T (the Phantom of the Room Inspections) put on a grand show, in which he gave an opera song spectacle! Our room scored a 1.1 out of 5 stars from the International Room Inspection society. There was an uproar in laughter, as Mr. T was indeed hilarious. Later in the day, we had a shortened WIPPIS schedule that consisted of only Inquiry Project Time.

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One simple hello can lead to everything. Today was my first interview with a very friendly man with the name of Mr. Zhao. He is the owner of a local pharmacy that sells both Traditional Chinese Medicine and Western Medicine. I learned a lot from him and was thankful for his outspoken personality and being the most friendly person that I have met in Xi Zhou. I have made a new friend in him, and it all began with saying, "你好!”. My first interview was extremely successful and as a result, I am more than excited for my next interaction with the locals. Ms.

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The Microcampus Phenomena Group has had yet another enjoyable day. With our daily schedule finalized, we are appointed with a certain level of independence that thrills me to have. In Shanghai, it feels like we always have someone looking over our shoulder and urging us along, however, on Microcampus we must get out of our comfort zone and push ourselves. As we rise to challenges, we will lift the group into shooting for 10-foot rim. Today was another normal-schedule day, we began with breakfast, then SAS Essentials, Daily Meeting, Lunch, WIPPIS, 5-4-5 Meeting and dinner.

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Today was our first, official, real, authentic day of Microcampus. A schedule was established and we had to independently following the schedule. It was a much better day than yesterday, and we are all learning from our mistakes. Today, we were let free and it was up to us to fly or to crash. I feel that today our group flew. We have recovered from our wrong doings as a group, and moved on to become more successful.

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As the days of Microcampus progress, the schedule becomes more familiar. Although it is only the third day, I am already getting a feel for what life as a Microcampus student is like. Today was a really beautiful day and we were able to enjoy it with a in-training bike ride. Mr. T organized a 2 hour bike ride, where we were expected to earn biking license. Our group not only earned our driving license, but also proved to be a group that Mr. T called "exemplary", and one of the best biking groups that have been on Microcampus.

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Our second day of Microcampus consisted of becoming further accustomed to the serene environment surrounding our new home. We had two tours today, one of which we learned more about Yangzhuoran, and the other one where we learned about the Xi Zhou village. The day began with the Yangzhuoran tour and I also worked on my plan to stay well during my stay. After the completion of the Yangzhuoran tour, the group went out and found many essential places that are important to note. These places include the bank, 菜市场 (market)the Tie-Die lady, the Rice Factory and Sifangjie.

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The door of achievement has opened for us today. We must not only step into that door, but embrace what will come out of that door. The Phenomena Group has officially arrived in Xi Zhou after an early morning flight and setting a first-time record for the first Microcampus group to arrive at this early time in Xi Zhou. My love for our new home, Yangzhuoran, is increasing as I become more accustomed to our new residence. Because we arrived so early, our group was able to have more time to explore around the village before dinner time.

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The door of achievement has opened for us today. We must not only step into that door, but embrace what will come out of that door. The Phenomona Group has officially arrived in Xi Zhou after an early morning flight and setting a first-time record for the first Microcampus group to arrive at this early time in Xi Zhou. My love for our new home, Yangzhuoran, is increasing as I become more accustomed to our new residence. Because we arrived so early, our group was able to have more time to explore around the village before dinner time.

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Hi! This is my first journal post. I am a microcampus member that will be on the trip from April to May. I can't wait to see what Microcampus will bring and I hope that I will be a different, more exposed and experienced person when I return. I am interested to learn more about the inquiry project that I will be spending a majority of my time on and to do more research and learn about Yunnan. I would like to say Thank you to Mr.Tafel and Ms. Mai for this wonderful opportunity that has been offered to me. 

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Hello all! I am Raine-Monet W., and I was in Xi Zhou for the unforgettable Microcampus experience, as a part of the Phenomena group. Microcampus was a facet for me to further do what I love, learn more about where I live and discover who I am as a person. Being on Microcampus allowed me to see China in a different way and I will cherish the memories that I made for the rest of my life, all it took was one month in this phenomenal place.