Brandon Johnson, Class of '08
In Spring 2007, I studied in Beijing, China for six months. While living in China, I was able to travel to many provinces and visit many impressive sights. I was able to watch Confucian musicians pay homage to Confucius at Jianshui, pay my respects to the Giant Buddha at Leshan (who provides safe passage for river passengers at the intersection of three rivers in Sichuan province), visit the oldest known Daoist temple in Chengdu, and walk the grounds where Bodhidharma transmitted Chan (Zen) Buddhism at Shao Lin Monastery. I was able to have this life changing experience with help from the faculty and funding from the Benjamin Gilman International Scholarship. If any student in the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies is interested in having a similar experience, talk with the faculty and check out the Gilman Scholarship (http://www.iie.org/programs/gilman/index.html); you will not regret it.
I can not say enough about my experiences in China. I studied under well respected Chinese professors, lived on campus at the University of International Business and Economics in Beijing, China. Joining a student ran Tai Ji Quan Club allowed me to develop personal relationships with several Chinese college students who were extremely delighted that I was involved with their organization, not to mention, that I provided some comic relief with my superb forms. Go, Travel, Live, Learn, and Love!
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