In fact, students in the Rev. Mark R. Francis, CSV, International Program, as well as those studying Chinese and in the Chinese Club had decorated the dining area for the Chinese New Year, which was officially celebrated Saturday.
Students found placemats explaining each of the zodiac signs—including the Year of the Rooster—set out on red tablecloths, symbolizing good fortune and joy. Menu options included pot stickers and egg rolls, a beef noodle bowl, sweet and sour chicken, dumplings and a Chinese meat bun (baozi).
Andy Jiang ’19 explained that every year, his extended family would gather to celebrate the Chinese New Year. They would have an elaborate meal, with a similar menu that included dumplings, fish, beef, sweet rice balls and other traditional delicacies.
Of course, children always received money in little red envelopes from their elders, to symbolize good luck.
“Students here never experienced this,” Andy says. “This is a good way to learn about our culture.”
Linzi Zheng ’18 said that the only thing missing were the fireworks.
In all, there are 70 students in Saint Viator’s international program this year, including 50 Chinese students, 16 from Korea, and one each from Colombia, Italy, Mexico, and Russia.
“They’ve been a wonderful addition to our school family,” says Principal Eileen Manno, “and contributed greatly to our diversity.”