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CESL 2020 Virtual Graduation Ceremony

Time flies! As the summer begins, in a blink of an eye it is already time for graduation day. On July 5, 2020, the China-EU School of Law's 2020 graduation ceremony was successfully held online using Tencent Conference. The event was attended by Chinese Co-Dean Liu Fei, European Executive Co-Dean Monty Silley, and faculty representative Prof. Zheng Yongliu. Faculty, staff and of course all graduating students, together experienced a unique "cloud graduation" this year.

At 9 am, with graduating classmate Ms. Wang Lulu serving as MC, the graduation activity officially began.

The first speech was from Ms. Wang Yijia, a graduate of the double master's programme. Talking about the three years spent with CESL, from love at first sight to long-lasting hardship, Ms. Wang Yijia's most mentioned word was gratitude: the gratitude for the open and diverse atmosphere of the School, the gratitude for all the hard work of the professors and staff, and the gratitude for the companionship from other students day and night. At the same time, every bit of learning and life from Fuxue Road to Xitucheng Road was deeply appreciated. Finally, when referring to the regrets and difficulties in 2020, she shared a quotation: "Where the heart desires, pursues everything, lives like a journey, and relies on a voyage", in order to encourage everyone to go upstream and pursue their own dreams.

Then came a speech by the representative of the Master of European and International Law (MEIL), graduate Ms. Ding Jingjing. The MEIL programme left a deep impression on Ms. Ding Jingjing. Despite certain academic pressures, facing one exam after another, professors with different accents from different countries, covering a diverse range of different fields in European law and the difficulty of understanding certain topics like "direct effect", but after all the hardships, the students finally have a more comprehensive and profound understanding of professional knowledge and multiculturalism. She said: "I have learned how to better embrace this world!" Finally, she hopes that everyone can use their time to learn more things.

Next was a speech by Dr. Shao Yufei, a graduate of the doctoral program. Dr. Shao Yufei has spent 6 years at CESL. He joked that the greatest regret in these years was that he didn't attend a graduation ceremony in his own hall until he graduated. And this special "cloud graduation" also made him aware of the trivial aspects of human beings. While feeling the uncertainty of the future, he also encouraged us to think about what direction we should face and what role we should play in this world. Finally, he borrowed the phrase the "rule of law" as used within the School, hoping that we should understand the close relationship between our development and the national process, and live up to the lofty expectations of our alma mater.

This was followed by an alumna speech by Ms. Chen Lingyu. Ms. Chen Lingyu, combined talking about her work experience as a judge while also sending sincere blessings to every graduate present. Ms. Chen Lingyu hopes that everyone will have the courage to pursue their dreams. Even if the employment situation is somewhat bleak at the moment, they must dare to choose the career they love, seize the opportunities, and put them into practice. At the same time, she also hopes that everyone will maintain their enthusiasm for learning. Karma is industrious and frivolous, graduation is not the end, but a new beginning. Only by continuous learning can we not be worn away by wind and rain, and ultimately achieve a strong sense of self.

Then the Faculty representative Professor Zheng Yongliu delivered a speech. "We laughed and said goodbye, but we knew that goodbye was far away." Professor Zheng Yongliu quoted this famous quote from Marquez, and he felt that after this farewell day, when would he meet again? He said that although the next meeting may be indefinite, there is one thing that can firmly connect us to each other, that is CESL's unique temperament. This temperament comes from the unique experience of studying both Chinese and Western views in our Law School. It allows us to find each other and achieve lasting understanding from both Chinese and European perspectives.

Next was the speech by European Executive Co-Dean Monty Silley. He said he was very happy and excited for today, but at the same time a little disappointed. Disappointed that he couldn't send his blessings in person, but still delighted that we could finally usher in a successful graduation, which is a milestone in one’s lifelong learning. He immediately said that this commencement represented a brand-new start. We can celebrate the past, but what is more important is to move towards the future, even if the future is challenging. He then challenged the graduates to imagine themselves 50 years later, and to think of everything they had done and achieved in life. He told the graduates that they must pursue their dreams with courage and continually strive to live their lives in a wonderful way, so they have no regrets in the future.

Finally, Prof. Liu Fei, the Chinese Co-Dean, delivered a speech. Prof. Liu Fei recalled the interesting experience of his own Ph.D. graduation, and was convinced that this unprecedented "cloud graduation" can also leave deep memories for everyone. Then, he hopes that everyone will continue to work hard and keep learning after graduating into society. In particular, this experience of studying in China and Europe will definitely help everyone to better face this rapidly changing world. Finally, he encouraged us not to forget our original intentions and make our own contributions to the country's rule of law process.

With that the China-EU School of Law's 2020 graduation ceremony successfully concluded. The teachers and students sent each other best wishes. In the end, a photos of all students, faculty and staff were displayed and music by a group of the graduates themselves singing was played to end the ceremony in a cheerful manner.

Originally written in Chinese by: Chen Shuguang (CESL double master student)