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Chinese-studentsBournemouth University is definitely an international university. I’ve met people from all over world here. As a Chinese person in England, I wanted to feel the exotic atmosphere, but also wanted more friends with the same cultural background as me.

When I came to England alone, at first I was worried about how to meet Chinese people and blend into a new network of friends. However, there is nothing to worry about, the Welcome Reception at the beginning of the first term provides lots of chances for new students to build new friendships and explore their new home. Through this event, I met many Chinese schoolmates who became my good friends afterwards!

Welcome-ceremony

Welcome reception

The second thing on my mind was food. I cannot live without Chinese food! Fortunately, there are some Asian supermarkets in Lansdowne and Winton with a wide variety of Chinese, Japanese and Korean food. Weekends became my favourite time of the week, having a small get-together with other Chinese students, cooking and sharing different home-style Chinese food.

Chinese-food

Home-made food with friends

If you are not good at cooking and too lazy to wash dishes, Chinese restaurants and takeaways are also a brilliant choice! Whether you like Cantonese dim sum or Szechwan style spicy hotpot or even Taiwan bubble milk tea, you can explore delicacies here in Bournemouth. The taste on your tongue will immediately alleviate your homesickness.

Food-in-Bournemouth

Food out and about in Bournemouth

I think, for Chinese, the most homesick time must be the Spring Festival. It is tradition to be with family and have a special dinner. Actually, at Bournemouth University, we also have Chinese New Year Celebrations organised by the Chinese Student Union.

Chinese-NY

We enjoy traditional performances and games and we have a sumptuous New Year’s Eve dinner with our friends. You might enjoy it here more than back home! (P.S. If you want to eat out, don’t forget to make a reservation as early as possible because most of the Chinese restaurants get fully booked around Chinese New Year.)

Chinese-New-Year-meal

I have spent two years here and I would like to tell all the international students, don’t be afraid of living abroad. Bournemouth can also be your home.

Thank you to BU and all my friends here – you gave me a sense of family!

By Liyuan Zhang