Ni Hao, My name is Miranda Parvis and I am a junior at Florida International University, Chaplin School of Hospitality and Tourism Management. I am a student as well as employee in The Honors College at FIU. This fall semester of 2011 I was given the opportunity of a lifetime, to be able to study abroad in the Tianjin University of Commerce (TUC) an FIU cooperative school in Tianjin, China. Having overcome numerous obstacles throughout my life makes this study abroad experience even more fulfilling. Some years back my family was separated indefinitely, I was working full time in order to finance my education and going to school full time. I moved to the US when I was 5 years old from Argentina along with my family and since then have been living in Miami. I have an older brother and sister with whom I’m very close. Being an immigrant is difficult but I believe that it gives you certain training that no other experience can give you. You learn to adapt. For this reason traveling and studying abroad is extremely important for not only my career but my personal growth. During my time in China I plan to visit places like Beijing, Xian (the largest city in the northwest), and the Great Wall of China amongst many other places. I also intend to soak in as many Asian traditions and culture differences as possible. As a major country in the forefront of hospitality; I believe China will be an important stepping stone for me. The Asian culture and language is a huge part of not only the world, but the tourism industry as a whole. Learning about the differences that exist between modern day China and old traditional ways are essential in truly learning what traveler’s expectations and needs are. I honestly couldn’t be happier to be the student chosen for the scholarship.

Journal entries by Miranda