With the Chinese New Year celebrations not far behind, Chinese Student Association of EUR is starting the New Year productively. Beginning today, the sixth edition of China in Focus will bring a business and a cultural symposium, a visit to ABN AMRO, workshops, and a movie screening.

Chinese around the world, including the substantial Chinese diaspora of just under 70,000 people in the Netherlands, met the dragon year with festivities, fireworks and family gatherings. Wanting to also honour and please the dragon – a symbol of luck and success – CSA organized an impressive line-up of speakers, from Dolores van Dongen, an Assistant Director for China Business Services at Ernst & Young to Sophia Su, to the manager of the Chinese team of Houthoff Buruma, among others, who will be sharing their knowledge through Thursday.

Bridging the gap

As Maggie Bisschop, the CSA-EUR president says, this year the main goal is to expand CSA, make it more accessible, and more widely known as well as to further reinstate the mission statement; “closing the gap between the Dutch and Chinese culture”, in order to create a platform, for example the China in Focus event, where people with different nationalities but united by a keen interest in China and its culture can gather and collaborate.This week’s events will conclude with a dinner and a party on Thursday night. For the program details, check their website

Dumplings and fireworks

Zaiyue Yuh, and IBA student from China, celebrates the lunar New Year even when she is abroad. “Even in Rotterdam I saw a typical Chinese lion dance near Beurs and a huge dragon put up in front of the Shielandshuis.” Obviously, being away from parents and the homeland does not bring the same atmosphere, but the international students still celebrate with the same vigour and style. Groups of Chinese students gather to celebrate and cook dumplings together, and even though they are not from the same regions in China, they always have a good time. “We put coins in some dumplings and chilies in others, so that people who are lucky enough to eat those will have fortunate and a lively year, accordingly”.

By the way, it’s not too late to celebrate the Chinese New Year! Join rotterdammers on Wednesday at 12:00 in West-Kruiskade for the celebration, complete with dancing and kung-fu demonstrations! MD

Here are a few pictures of the last years event. Pictures by CSA-EUR.