Jiaying Chen

Jiaying Chen
BA student | Class of 2023

Name: Jiaying Chen 
Cohort: BA2023
Hometown: 26.0998° N, 119.2966° E

What is an influential class, book, or concept that blew your mind?
I remember the first year in my semester of DRBU, I was struggling with academic writing. In my Buddhist classic class, Dharma Master Jin Chuan told me that I can try to write as if I am talking to a friend as a way to unpack the text and introduce what I learn from the book! That indeed blew my mind at that time. I was absolutely inspired!

Are there any surprising things you learned?
As a native Chinese speaker, I am studying English-translated ancient Chinese texts and I found I have more understanding of that text in English . 

What does contemplative practice mean to you? 
A time for relaxation, a touch for your heart, and a bunch of space for reflection. The Contemplative Exercise Immersion week is my favorite time each semester. 

What’s it like to be a part of the DRBU community? 
It’s a blessing to be here. I am enjoying the wonderful vegan food everyday from the temple’s kitchen, delicious and nutritious, nurturing food, and the beautiful nature-surrounded campus. We are living in a zoo, with different animals walking around. We are located in a very safe and very peaceful location.

What do you do outside of class?
Listening to dharma talks.

Can you share a memory of a quintessential DRBU moment with us?
When Professor Powers said a line alike, “You are now living in a dream.”, I don’t remember exactly how he phrased it, but I thought, “he’s telling the truth.”

How has financial aid played a role in your being at DRBU? What’s your service scholarship (work study) job? 
Without the help from the university, I wouldn’t be able to have my education. I am more than grateful for the financial aid from the university.

What would you say to someone who is thinking about applying to DRBU? 
I’d say I am not a very academic person, but because this is a very supportive community, I still feel very encouraged here, to be myself and to learn. I feel seen here with kind-hearted people in the community. I think DRBU [is] a very good place to land as a ground for developing mental space for discovering more who we are. Don’t miss out on the amazing vegeterian food here!