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2020 Candlelight & Opening Ceremony
Monday, September 28 – The 2020 Candlelight & Opening Ceremony was held at Sias University's Track & Field Stadium on the 27th of September. The chief guests included the Party Secretary of Taiyuan University of Technology, Prof. Zheng Qiang; the Founding Partner and CEO of Smart Cinema, Dr. Jack Gao; the Director of the Department of Human Resources & Social Security at the Zhengzhou Municipal Bureau, Jiang Rongrong; the Director of the Department of Human Resources & Social Security at the Xinzheng Municipal Bureau, Xia Hongyan; the Director of the Zhengzhou Recruitment and Examination Center, Lu Junchi; the Deputy Secretary-General of the Puyang Municipal People's Government, Ge Lei; the General Manager of Wuhan Golden Apple Science & Education Development Services, Qiu Zuomiu; and the former Executive Vice President of Sias, Dong Qiming. Representatives of the Military Training Corps, educational leaders from high schools across China, enrollment officials from partner schools, Sias alumni, Sias leaders, representatives of the Communist Party Committee, foreign teachers, new employees, student representatives, and all the freshmen of the 2020/21 academic year were at the Ceremony.
At the start of the ceremony, video messages from the President of the Sias Foundation, Paul Rusnak, and the President of Fort Hays State University (FHSU), Dr. Tisa Mason, were shown to the audience. This was followed by the singing of the national anthem of the People’s Republic of China.
The Founder and Chairman of the Board of Sias, Dr. Shawn Chen, delivered a speech and welcomed the freshmen to the Sias family. He said that the Candlelight Ceremony was a part of the Sias tradition to welcome freshmen every year. In a year of change, he said that he hoped that the students would be able to integrate into the university well. He said that Sias would serve the students and help them with their academics to give them the courage to innovate.
Zheng Qiang spoke highly of Sias' student-oriented educational concept. He encouraged the freshmen to study hard, be down-to-earth, use Sias' high-quality resources, explore their talent, and develop professional expertise.
Dr. Jack Gao also delivered a speech and congratulated and welcomed the freshmen. He spoke about his personal and entrepreneurial experiences, encouraged students to study hard, innovate, evolve, and enhance their competitiveness to improve their lives.
Student Representative, Li Yilin, a member of the Zhixing Residential College, spoke on behalf of the freshmen. She expressed her gratitude to the military training instructors and tutors for their guidance. She said that the education at Sias, with its international educational environment, was a unique advantage for its students.
After this, Dr. Chen and the President of the Sias Alumni Association's Puyang Chapter, Wang Chuanli, presented awards to students who won scholarships in 2020. There were also scholarships presented that were sponsored by Sias alumni.
After the awards ceremony, Sias Vice President, Xu Shengdao, led the freshmen in the swearing of their oath.
Dr. Chen followed this by lighting a torch symbolizing the spirit of Sias, and passed it to student representatives from the 9 residential colleges. The Candlelight ceremony continued with the singing of the Sias University Song - "My Sias" - followed by all the students lighting their candles from the torch.
A series of performances by various student groups and the Sias Art Troupe entertained the audience before the annual lottery led by Dr. Chen. The lottery included prizes for studying at the Sias Driving School, a full IELTS Scholarship, scholarships for overseas exchanges, financial aid for studying abroad, and a dinner with Dr. Chen.
The Candlelight Ceremony concluded with a video produced by the Sias News Center, that featured parents' wishes for the students and Sias.
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