A Warm Welcome to Parents of Class 2024 for Joining the NYU Shanghai Community

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September 8th marked the start of a new semester at NYU Shanghai, and the arrival of the Class of 2024 on campus. Typically, the emotional moments of Move-in Day are experienced as a family. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic prevention requirements being dutifully observed at NYU Shanghai, this year is the first time in the University’s history that freshman students must move in without the assistance of any family members. The day was also marked by the absence of the majority of the Class of 2024’s international families-- current travel restrictions resulted in these students starting their semesters remotely. However, their inability to enter campus did not discourage these freshman parents from taking the opportunity to connect and celebrate with each other.  


That same day, over 100 freshman parents gathered together in Shanghai at a self organized event to celebrate this new journey together. Yuan Yi, first year parent and host for the afternoon, kicked off the event sharing that “we all have come from all over China to meet here for a single dream-- the dream of NYU Shanghai! For this dream we would travel 1000 miles, because our children’s dreams are an extension of our own, and the future of the world will be in their hands. So today marks the beginning of this new chapter in their lives.”


The parents put together the agenda and the event through their own initiative


The Foundation has often served as a bridge between parents and the University, and so it was an honor that parents invited Qing Liu to deliver a welcome speech to the parents of the Class of 2024. She reiterated that NYU Shanghai parents, like their children, are an optimistic, engaged, curious and creative group. NYU Shanghai parents have a strong sense of identity with and ownership of the university, and Liu expected this group of parents to be no different in that regard. She encouraged them to stay engaged with the University, inviting them to do so by keeping in touch through the Foundation. Parents have always been major champions of NYU Shanghai’s advances as a university, in addition to being staunch supporters of the students’ needs, demonstrated by their enthusiastic participation during Foundation functions. We as members of the Foundation look forward to getting to know parents and deepening their individual connection with the university, as we know they are our best ambassadors and allies. 

A brief introduction of members of the freshman class was shown, which showcased a wide range of students and their unique personalities!  

Zhaoxia Wang, the parent class representative who traveled from Beijing, mentioned in a heartfelt speech that she is “very honored to have this opportunity to celebrate our gathering of the parents of the Class of 2024.” She elaborated further, “First, I would like to share that this morning Chancellor Tong sent us his warm regards. Further, I would like to acknowledge the Foundation’s efforts, in addition to the work of the parents who have come before us. These parents have set the precedent of selfless giving, a precedent that we hope to meet. We all shared the hope that our children attend NYU Shanghai, and now we all share the hope that they will continue to develop individually, to learn compassion, to maintain a global perspective, and to become accomplished in a multitude of fields.” 


Program of the event


The Foundation would like to applaud the efforts of the volunteers who organized this event, including: Ms. Violet Qiling Zhang, Mr. Zengli Wang, Ms. Lei Cai, Ms. Lifen Ding, Mr. Yi Yuan, Ms. Wenjin Cai, Ms. Xiaoli Jin, Ms. Ying Su, Ms. Shaonong Li, Ms. Jiayin Lou, Mr. Yijun Geng, Ms. Rongyang Cai, Ms. Yuning Zhang, Ms. Fangfang Zhao, Ms. Xiaoying Bao, Ms. Yuan Zhou, and Ms. Ying Jiao. 

It is our pleasure as the foundation to welcome the newest “class” of parents to the NYU Shanghai community. We hope that they, along with their children, have a productive and memorable four years. To help stay informed and witness their children’s experiences firsthand, we have a newsletter that parents can follow to stay “in the know.”