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Fiona Charlier:From Fiona to Tsinghua

2020-08-19

Name:Fiona Charlier唐婺盈

Nationality:Belgium

Division:Chemistry and Life Science

Year of Enrollment:2019

From Fiona to Tsinghua

My first encounter with Tsinghua was 10 years ago. During a short trip to Beijing, I got the chance to visit Tsinghua's campus. Who knew, that 10 years later, I would come back as a proud Tsinghua student?

From an early age, I found my passion in the life sciences. I dedicated much of my time in extracurricular activities related to my future major. I attended zoology summer school, studied with PhD students at a neuroscience lab, and worked as an intern in a biotechnology company – all of these just to strengthen my will for a future career in China. After graduating from high school, I decided to come to Tsinghua while my friends attended universities all over the world. I am ready to learn what I love, improve myself, encounter like-minded peers, and follow my dream. To this date, I have submitted my major declaration, and I got accepted by the department of life science. I am yet one step closer towards my goals.

I still remember my first days at Tsinghua, not knowing what was ahead of me, but already making friends. During freshmen orientation for international students, I began to get used to the size of the campus, the biking rather than walking, and the “hunt” for well-hidden classrooms. Every day, I exercised and studied with my international friends, but I was still nervous and timid during class reunions with my local classmates. You might think that the local students who were at the top of their class back in high school would put on airs; in contrast, my local classmates from化94 are the nicest and sweetest people I’ve met, and are all charming in their own way.

“If there's no sports, there's no Tsinghua” was the first Tsinghua spirit that I learned from personal experience. From the very start of orientation, I could feel the persistence and thoroughness when it came to sports at Tsinghua. Even now, during the COVID-19 pandemic, Tsinghua’ers still maintain their athletic passion.

Academics is a big part of my life as a Tsinghua student. Challenges were present—the new vocabulary, the dense materials, and the rigorous pace of college courses gave me some trouble at first. But the academic and competitive atmosphere here urges all students to put in their best effort when it comes to studying. My local and international peers helped me through some hard times; the faculty and professors are also approachable and kind. I also took several lessons from my fellow classmates while sharing opinions, doing research, and making projects. Some close friends and I started a little “self-study support group” and held quite a few sessions in the study halls of the international dormitory.

At Tsinghua, social and extracurricular activities are also a great part of college life. Here, I continued what I loved to do—singing and making music—and set foot in some areas that I’ve never tried before—such as making WeChat official account publications and hosting a freshman ball. I am now in the publicity group of化94 and the student association of the Chemical engineering department. Tsinghua gave me the grounds to explore more fields and expand my understanding of known ones. Here at Tsinghua, the possibilities are limitless.

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