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Student to pay tuition with mandarin oranges
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University student Wu Xiaobin and his father prepare mandarin oranges on Thursday, February 19, 2009, before transporting them to Xiaobin's school campus in Hangzhou, hoping to sell for Xiaobin's school tuition, [Photo: Qianjiang Evening News]

An impoverished university student who winded up his recent winter vacation in his countryside hometown had to travel heavily this time back to his Zhejiang University in Hangzhou Thursday evening, the Qianjiang Evening News reported.

The trudging load Wu Xiaobin, the poor student, had to travel back with to his campus was neither books nor other gifts to friends, but some 5,000 kilograms of oranges his father prepared for him, hoping him to exchange enough money for his new school term tuition!

Wu, now a sophomore at the School of Media and Communication in Zhejiang University, one of the country's top universities, was born into a poor rural family in a harsh village in Quzhou, a mountainous western county region in Zhejiang, which is about a four-hour train or bus drive to Hangzhou, the capital city of the province.

Stuck in poverty, his fruit farmer parents were unable to pay for his tuition in cash. As his son's new semester following the lunar New Year was just around the corner, the father had no way but to give him ten thousand kilograms of mandarin oranges, in the hope his boy would sell them around his campus to pay for his studies.

Expressing a deep move and appreciation, the local newspaper called on local people or university students to offer Wu Xiaobin a possible helping hand when he was scheduled to sell his oranges on campus at 1 p.m. Friday, February 20.

(CRI February 20, 2009)

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