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Students encouraged to leave parents behind

Updated: 2012-08-15 00:40
By Luo Wangshu and Cao Yin ( China Daily)

Police have applauded Tsinghua University for encouraging new students to come to this year's enrollment day by themselves — a move designed to reduce congestion in the community.

The first group of 600 freshmen and their families arrived at the university on Saturday morning. However, a yellow line was drawn about 20 meters from the enrollment area to block parents' entrance.

Students encouraged to leave parents behind 

Li Ze, who got the highest score during the college entrance exam in Beijing, reports to Tsinghua University alone last week. [Photo/Beijing Times]

Students had to walk into the area with all their materials and line up to enroll by themselves, Beijing Times reported.

Tsinghua's decision will reduce the congestion that affects the area every year, said Wang Qi, a police officer from Huaqingjiayuan community in Wudaokou.

"There are dozens of universities around this area, which booms every year on freshmen enrollment day. Some students come with their whole families," Wang added.

Wang said enrollment days always cause traffic congestion and minor accidents.

"Our station will send out officers to each university around here to reduce pressure on campus police, and keep the ivory towers safe," he added.

The 24-year-old police officer also said that the move will save police energy if all schools encourage students to come on their own.

Tsinghua President Chen Jining encouraged incoming students to be independent.

"I wish you to carry your own luggage to school when sailing on your journey from now on. Come to school for enrollment on your own, and take the first step into your life independently," he wrote in an open letter.

During the past decade, more urban Chinese families are accompanying freshmen to college, which in Chinese is called the "army sending off the child".

The price of plane tickets to big cities, where universities are concentrated, rises each autumn. Hotels and hostels are filled with joyful parents.

Peng Bin, a former student at Beijing Normal University, was sent by her mom to the capital in her first year of college life.

The 27-year-old Guizhou native sees it as an expression of love from her parents, saying that she accepts the way her parents provide for her.

She said that her mom looked on it as a chance for a vacation.

"It doesn't mean that I need help from my parents, nor that I couldn't carry the luggage, but I just want them to share my joy of being a college student."

However, she disagreed with taking it to the extreme.

"My roommate was accompanied by four of her family members and it was a little too much," she added.

There were also some students who wished to be independent from the start.

Wang Hao, a Beijing native also a former Tsinghua student, recalled that he fled from his parents' car and pulled out all the luggage on his own.

"They dropped me off and left," he said, adding that it is more comfortable to make new friends and learn about college without mom and dad.

"I'd rather drive by myself there, too," he said.

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