Panyu, Guangzhou

Prior to my arrival, I was unaware of the environment I was settling into. No prior research in bing, baidu, or google was done. I was challenged by the idea of starting over at a country where I knew nobody.  I ventured off to this country searching for what seemed to be anomalous. This city has given me a whirlwind of lows, but also made me my happiest. This city humbled me, but also made me my proudest. This city gave me an opportunity to reflect on my actions and behavior more closely. This city made me versatile, knowledgeable, and tolerant with the cultural differences between the East and the West. This city gave me inspiration to continue my academic career even though I was on the verge of calling it quits. This city that made me feel the closest to my family, even though I am thousands of miles away. This city made me realize my potential shouldn’t remain at potential. Throughout my duration here in China, I have been able to augment my experiences and expertise: independently tackling obstacles that life throws at me. Change grows you, and pain humbles you. Many of you may not know, my time is cut short because I have to take care of things back home. I hope I have impacted my students as much as they have impacted me. To the people I have crossed paths with, even for a brief amount of time, we have intersected paths for a reason. May you all continually work toward your goals, and do not let society’s timeline define your “supposed” placement in life. My heart is full; China, you are adventurous beyond words. Toronto, you’re up next.

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