Life at Ripon — Chuchen Tan ’16

Chapter 4: Cherishing Time

[Editor’s Note: Chuchen Tan ’16, Sara Driebel ’16, and Jacob Sahr ’16 are writing rotating monthly entries for the Ripon College Newsletter chronicling their senior year experiences. We hope you enjoy their perspectives on Life At Ripon!]

Happy April everyone!

As of this moment, Commencement is just a little more than five weeks away. I am sure that every senior has different feelings about leaving Ripon College, whether it is excitement, anxiety, sadness or, in many cases, a mixture of everything. Throughout my four years at Ripon, I was fortunate enough to gain new knowledge of the world and myself, make lifelong friends and bond on a personal level with my professors and supervisors whose guidance is invaluable in my professional and personal growth. I am extremely lucky to have them in my life, especially my advisors who endorsed my abilities and supported me each time I wanted to challenge myself a little further.

Ripon not only provides us with great academic resources but also helps us garner future career connections, as well. During spring break this year, I was lucky to be part of a student team who presented their chemistry research at the international American Chemical Society conference in San Diego. You can read more about our visit here. We not only were blessed with beautiful California weather, but more importantly, we had the chance to meet and talk to many passionate scientists whose selfless and diligent devotion to the field is immensely inspiring.

Most of us are perhaps uncertain of what the future holds, but that never was a reason to stop us from trying to be the best of ourselves every day. Yesterday, a group of us were watching a film called Go Away Mr. Tumor, a touching narrative of famous Chinese manga artist Xiong Dun, who, in the last years of her life, shared with the world the story of her long battle with cancer before dying at the age of 30. She does not coil in the face of death but instead continues to gift the world with laughter and positivity. Near the end of her life, she made a video of herself speaking at her own funeral, saying goodbye to the people she cared about. “Love and be loved are the two most important things in this world. Remember that.”

As much as I refused to admit it, the closing of this chapter of my life as a senior would mean leaving — leaving this beautiful place and its wonderful people. So, in these coming weeks, I will cherish my limited time here even more, and I entreat all seniors to laugh a little louder, hug a little tighter and love a little harder. Make this not an end but a spring that pushes us toward a fabulous new time in our lives.

Chuchen Tan

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