Chinese students in U.S. Midwest gather at virtual gala to mark Chinese New Year

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CHICAGO, Feb. 27 (Xinhua) -- Chinese students from a dozen universities in U.S. Midwest gathered at a 2021 virtual Lantern Festival gala Friday night to mark the Chinese New Year, the Year of the Ox.

Co-hosted by Chinese Consulate in Chicago and U.S. Midwest Chinese Students and Scholars Association, Chinese students and artists from universities in nine states in U.S. Midwest presented to the audience online Chinese folk music, street dance, folk dance, piano solo and duet.

The piano solo "My Motherland" performed by a Northwestern University Chinese student brought the audience back to their homeland.

Addressing the event, Chinese Consul-General in Chicago Zhao Jian said the health and safety of Chinese students overseas have always been the top concern of the Chinese government. "The Chinese Consulate in Chicago will always be the home of Chinese students."

More than 10 universities in U.S. Midwest sent their Lunar New Year greetings to the gala.

In a video, University of Chicago (UChicago) President Robert Zimmer recalled the long history of engagement UChicago has with China, saying China's rapid growth in recent decades has made it more imperative than ever to "foster deep mutual understanding and interaction in an effort to address the most pressing issues facing society today."

On behalf of UChicago, he wished everyone a happy, healthy, and prosperous new year.

"The Ox is associated with some of the very best qualities defining the human spirit: the Ox is diligent, resolute and dependable; calm and humble; and of course very hard-working," Northwestern University (NU) President Morton Schapiro said in the greeting video. "Those values are also Midwestern values and Northwestern values."

"The spirit of the Ox is the spirit we need during this New Year, in order to overcome our ongoing challenges and to build a kinder, more decent society," he added.

After sending tens of thousands of "Health Packs" to the Chinese students in U.S. Midwest in 2020, Chinese Consulate in Chicago sent "Chinese New Year Packages" and zodiac mascots to some Chinese students on Feb. 11, the eve of the Chinese New Year, hoping to bring Chinese students the blessing, warmth and love of the motherland. Enditem

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