Nanjing Normal University (NNU) celebrated its Commencement day on June 21, 2018 in the NNU Stadium. The university community gathered with the Class of 2018, their families and their friends to recognize and celebrate their achievements and awarded degrees to undergraduates in the Class of 2018.
Here are some highlights of commencement day:
President Guoxiang Chen addressed the graduates and Vice President Youlian Sun presided over the exercises.
Your future is in your hands
In his address to the students, President Chen sent his sincere wishes for the graduates.
“The past cannot be changed, but the future is in your hands. Have a clear plan for your future and your life will be even more exciting.” He reminded the graduates to believe in themselves and to be confident; he encouraged the students to seize the day and go and make an all-out effort in their chosen profession; and he told the students to not be overly self-critical and live a life of optimism. “No matter how busy your work is, you must eat on time, stick to physical exercise routine,” and “regardless of the difficulty, you should feel the sunshine and keep on smiling.”
“No matter where you go, bear in mind that there are romantic dreams as well as responsibilities in your youth; bear in mind NNU’s university motto; and don’t forget what NNU has done for your bright future. NNU will always care and support each graduate. NNU will always be your home,” Chen said.
NNU, never say goodbye
Siyuan Zhou, a 2018 graduate from the School of Computer Science and Technology shared his story with NNU.
“I spent four years in getting along with NNU and gradually came to know her, learn about her, and fall in love with her. When I fell in love with her, I only hoped that the time in NNU would slow down.”
“When I want to continue to be in her arms, I discover that ‘my university’ is going to become ‘my alma mater’. We must wave goodbye. But I believe we will meet again in the near future,” Zhou said.
NNU——Where my Chinese dream flies
Martin Oruc, the first overseas graduate of the School of Law who is from Turkey shared his experience in NNU with the teachers and the Class of 2018 in a humorous way.
“This is my fifth year in Nanjing. Nanjing is my second home and I also learned a lot about Nanjing. This is the last chance for you to treat me to hotpot and wonton. I am so into Chinese dishes. My friends sent me some zongzi (traditional Chinese rice-pudding) on the Dragon Boat Festival. I am very much looking forward to next year’s Dragon Boat Festival.”
“When I was a sophomore, my classmate gave me a spicy stick. At that time, I thought it was candy. After eating it, I felt that I finally became a Chinese. I want to express my thanks for him here. The second time that I felt like a Chinese was in the history class of Chinese legal system when the teacher taught me classical Chinese.”
“As a NNUer, I appreciate the help from the teachers and the students very much. They have always been there for me from the moment I entered into NNU. I will never forget their kindness in the years to come. Congratulations on your graduation!” Martin said.
I know what the western playground looks like at 5:30 am
Jiarong Zhong, the graduate representative of the School of Physics and Technology was proud of his persistence and hard work in the past four years.
“As an undergraduates majoring in Physics, we couldn’t have lazy sleeps like other students because before the first ray of the morning sun came out, we were already doing physical exercises at the western playground at 5:30 am. Busy as we were, we lived a meaningful life. Regardless of wind and rain, we persisted. In the past 1000 plus days and nights, we were not absent for even one single day.”
“The past are all our prefaces. In the future, we are on the new track of life. I will continue to strive forward and to be an outstanding NNUer!”
Thanks for everything and everyone I met at NNU
Anli Sun, the graduate representative of the School of Social Development told her story about her classmates, friends and teachers.
“I would like to thank my classmates and friends. When I was busy with the ‘CCTV Star of Hope’ and the ‘Challenge Cup’ competitions, it was your encouragement that made me relax.”
“I would like to thank the respected teachers. Whenever I encountered difficulties in scientific research, competitions and papers, you were always there for me.”
“My thanks also go out to NNU. Thank you so much for providing me the opportunity to be together with so many interesting souls and to enable me to continue my studies at Peking University.”
Be true to your heart
Xiaohua Huang, a professor from the School of Social Development and a rare earth chemistry expert from the National Development and Reform Commission, shared her personal experience in entering the field of chemistry and truly falling in love with this field with the graduates. She said that it was not until she entered into the brand-new field of rare earth cell biology at the age of 45 that she became fearless. “Because of pure love, you can see the starry sky when you close your eyes.”
“A lifetime is long and you can take your time to find what you love. Life is not an exam. There is no standard answer. You do not need to live someone else’s life. Remember to be true to yourself and don’t be afraid; a lifetime is also very short and to find what you really like, you have to be decisive,” Professor Huang said.
—— Xiaohua Huang
Seeking, Choosing and Persisting
Jianbo Zhang, a 1991 graduate of NNU and a former vice principal of the High School Affiliated to Nanjing Normal University delivered a speech as an alumni representative.
Combining his own experiences of studying, doing business, teaching, and establishing a school, he shared with the graduates his deep understanding of “seeking, choosing, and persisting” on the road of life. “‘Seeking’ is the driving force for everyone’s development, ‘Choice’ determines the direction of life, ‘persistence’ decides how far we can go,” Zhang said.
“Our Alma mater cannot decide your future fate. However, our alma mater has already filled your bags with spiritual food and full-hearted expectations. Let us seek, chose and persist in your life road with your deep love for our alma mater and the alma mater’s expectations.”