Silk Road Excursion: Student Reflections

Authored by:
Laura Harris

Laura Harris

Last week 开老师 and I had the pleasure of leading a passionate group of business students from Elon Univerisity on a weeklong excursion to Gansu province in Northwestern China. Gansu province is home to a number of historically significant trading centers and oases along the ancient silk road. Contemporary Gansu is undergoing substantial infrastructure development, especially in the area of transportation, due to China's One Belt One Road initiative, which, in part, encourages exchange and trade along these very same ancient paths. I asked some students to share a little bit about their experience each day. We will start with Hannah Kenny, who summarizes the first day of our adventure, which had a very early start: 

"Waking up at 5 in the morning on Sunday morning was completely worth the fun day our group had in Lanzhou. We began the day with a three-hour flight over beautiful desert scenery before landing in Lanzhou. Upon landing we shared a delicious group lunch, which was the first of many new flavors to come. This meal ranged from beef, to spicy tofu, and many types of vegetables with differing flavors from Shanghai cuisine. After lunch, we had the privilege of having a noodle-making class. We had a chef teach us how to pull beef noodles into many different forms from flat, ribbed, or thin. The best part of this afternoon was that we got to eat these beef noodles for dinner and have our experience come full circle during this meal. Finally, we ended the day by taking an overnight train into Dunhuang. There were four people to each small room, and while many viewed this as a challenge at first, it ended up being a really fun bonding experience for the entire group. This is something none of us have experienced in the United States, and it was an enjoyable new way of transportation we can add to our list of traveling methods. We cannot wait to see what the rest of the week brings!" - Hannah Kenny 

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