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Tianjin University 2017 Crabapple Season Draws in the Crowds

 Arts and Culture

On April 3rd, Tianjin University (TJU) hosted the Crabapple Season at both Weijin Road Campus and Peiyang Park Campus. With the aroma of crabapple flowers wafting from 700 crabapple trees filling Weijin Road campus, the event attracted more than thirty thousand visitors this year to celebrate Crabapple Season at Tianjin University. This annual celebration is a multi-cultural event involving various TJU student organizations as well as TJU faculty and staff. It took place mainly on Weijin Road Campus this year. The goal of this event is to promote a cultural exploration of TJU in a fun and relaxed setting. 

This year, over one hundred booths were set up around Peiyang Park and along Mingde Road, touting information about TJU’s different schools or selling souvenirs, such as postcards and bookmarks. Visitors moved from booth to booth in between browsing exquisite gifts and taking part in games.  

Designed by academician Peng YigangQiushi pavilion was first built in 1984 and was constructed together with Peiyang Square. It has affected the youth and memories of Tianjin university students for decades, and has been characterized as one of the symbols of the university in the hearts of students, faculty members, alumni and alumnae, even being regarded as an important carrier of the school motto. In October 2016, the university made a decision to reconstruct the pavilion based on its original appearance many schoolmates have expressed concerns about Qiushi Pavilion. After six months’ design and construction, the reconstructed Qiushi pavilion was already finished and ready to be reopened to the public. The opening ceremony of the reconstructed Qiushi Pavilion began at 10:00 a.m, where Headmaster Zhong Denghua, representative of alumnus Zhao Jian, Designer Wu Fei and representative of students Liu Jingyi jointly unveiled the reconstructed Qiushi pavilion plaque. 

“I entered into the Department of Civil Engineering at Tianjin University in 1982. Seeking truth from facts was rooted in my mind with the establishment of Qiushi Hall as well as the plaque carved with the school motto. After graduation, the motto of “seeking truth from facts” helped me concentrated on things themselves, and led me to the successes of my life. I really appreciate TJU and the designers who reconstructed the Qiushi pavilion. It occurs to me that I seem to be transported back to my youth again once I see the pavilion, No.9th building and the library. As a member of Tianjin University, I deeply love every corner of campus” said the chief of Shanxi province’s Alumni association. 

On the scene of the celebration, Zhang Qi, dean of the Architecture School, representing Peng Yigang, donated Peng’s copied manuscripts of Qiushi pavilion and collection of work to Liu Jingyi and Wu Fei respectively. This ceremony was emblematic of seeking truth from facts being the school motto, which is inherited generation after generation. Wu Fei also gave his own original scripts of the reconstructed Qiushi pavilion archives in TJU in order to preserve it, which also symbolizes that the spirit of “Seek Truth from Facts” will be passed on to successive Generations. 

The opening ceremony of the rebuilt Qiushi Pavilion [Photo/Tianjin University]  

Besides this ceremony, there were also other important activities. Remarkably, Tianjin University recently has two papers published in Science, which represent a radical breakthrough in the design and synthesis of eukaryotic genomes. Therefore, TJU Scientific Achievement Exhibition was held to unravel the mystery of this technology, as well as other outstanding high-end technological achievements. TJU is always keeping up with cutting-edge trends and technologies. Furthermore, on this very opening day, TJU opened both national-level laboratories and ministry-level laboratories to offer high school students a precious chance to explore scientific research. 

 “Crabapple Season is gradually becoming a calling card of Tianjin University. Over 300 high school students have visited this laboratory this morning”, said Teacher Wang, a chief in the State Key Laboratory of Engine Combustion in TJU.  “For high school students, this event showcases the spirit of innovation and exploration of scientific researchers, which could set an example for those students and arouse their interest in science. This opening day has a far-reaching educational meaning.”

 

 An exhibition of Student Scientific Awards and achievements. [Photo/Tianjin University]  

With attendance increasing every year, TJU looks forward to reaching out to the larger community, especially local residents and alumni to spread our influence as far as possible. This involves expanding the event’s social media presence through the creation of a Weibo topic as well as a WeChat interactive activity. Attendees are encouraged to follow the event’s social media accounts for updates and to post their own content during Crabapple Season. Alumni who have participated in Crabapple Season in previous years have raved about their experience through the internet, and have also delivered blessings to their Alma Mater. Organizers are also making a greater effort to share this playful, brilliant event with worldwide alumni. This year, CCTV News partnered with TJU to present this event in the form of live coverage. 

Tourists viewing an exhibition of paintings. [Photo/Tianjin University]  

Entertainment also has a large role in the festival. Faculty and students were on site painting crabapple flowers and practicing calligraphy. In addition, volunteers shared music, cultural artifacts, and conversation to promote TJU’s profound cultural accumulation. This highly anticipated event attracted thousands of faculty, staff, students and local residents to enjoy the multitude of activities available and experience during Crabapple Season.  This event concluded with live performances from groups of the Peiyang Arts Troupe along with coffee from 109 Coffee Bar, games and interactive activities such as painting, jigsaws, lottery, Hanoi Tower and a photo booth. Visitors collected manifold postcards by participating in these entertaining games. 

Booths and crowds at TJU crabapple festival. [Photo/Tianjin University]  

“Thank you, TJU! I really enjoyed this opportunity to learn more about the cultural environment here. ” A student from Xinhua High School told this journalist that she had visited TJU history museum and several laboratories today. “I feel so excited by these scientific studies. Having determined to choose science and engineering, I do hope I can be admitted to TJU.” 

Tourists actively participating in interactive games. [Photo/Tianjin University]  

The Crabapple Season has two main goals: to help the public better understand TJU in an engaging and interactive way and to demonstrate the university’s dedication to cultivating a diverse and welcoming environment. This artistic spirit along with the fragrance of flowers exhibits perfectly the profound historical culture of the pioneer of modern higher education in China.   

By: Wang Huiting and Chen Xiaoshan
Editors: Qin Mian, Christopher Peter Clarke, and Yin Shiyu