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CUL Students Blog about Adventures in China – Day 8

The Chicago Urban League is proud to announce that it is once again hosting a student mission trip to China! For the next two weeks, 24 CUL students are being immersed in the Chinese culture, customs and cuisine. This is a journey is an adventure of a lifetime that is sure to change their lives.

The great news is that we get to be a part of their journey through the blogs they are writing. Check out the 8th entry below:

Monday June 27, 2016

What are the differences between America and China? Today, taking China’s Reform and the 18th Congress seminar, I struggled to locate major discrepancies. Of course the major difference the majority of people locate is the difference in our governments. China’s a communist country, while America runs on the ideal of democracy. However, after today, our group has learned about the cultural similarities that unite us. As a nation, America continually focuses on economic development and improvement and this idea permeates China’s economic culture as well. Even though their reform has been in action for a mere 30 years, the amount of progress is remarkable. They’re right behind America in terms of economic development, and at this moment they’re our biggest rival.

However, this rivalry isn’t a bitter confrontation but instead it’s a “friendly competition” as stated by our instructor. This competition forces both countries to continuously improve. This friendship is also strengthened through our ambassadorship program with the students of Hangzhou Wanxiang Polytechnic and their 100K+ Initiative. This ambassadorship exchange is one of the key bonds that bring our countries together. The youth are the link that brings our nations together, the link that strengths our friendship. Furthermore, along with finding the similarities, we noticed some major differences such as China’s extensive history.

After our seminars, we went to Song Dynasty Town. We saw an amazing show that was a Chinese take on Romeo & Juliet. It had many elements including song, dance and story-telling. The special effects in the play were like nothing I’ve ever seen before. The stage could move up and down and rain even fell from the ceiling. There was even a part where live horses ran across the stage. Song Dynasty Town also had two haunted houses and a water attraction. I’m not ashamed to say that I screamed a little in both haunted houses. All in all it was a fun day composed of informative seminars and wholesome entertainment.

~Emani Figaro and Sydni-Anne Pearson