Mothers are celebrated on many different days around the world. In every month of the year, except January and September, Mother’s Day—or Mothering Sunday in the UK—is celebrated in some country somewhere in the world. In many countries, including China, mothers are celebrated on the second Sunday of May.
Shortly after we moved back to the States after living in Asia for many years, a Chinese researcher from a major university in China approached us asking if he could spend his last month in the US living with us. It wasn’t that his lease had expired or his stipend was running low. Rather, he realized that although he had lived in the American Midwest for a year doing research at a well-respected American university—he had experienced very little of American life and had very few non-Chinese friends.
If you live near a major university, chances are you will meet a student or researcher from China. In the 2013-14 academic year there were 274,439 students from China studying in the US at the university level. That is 31% of all international students studying in the US. This year there are 600 freshman at the University of Illinois—nearly one out of every ten new freshmen. No wonder they have started Mandarin broadcasts of their football games!