Chinese students at the U are collecting quake aid

There may be nowhere in Minnesota that the aftershocks of the earthquake in China are more keenly felt than at the University of Minnesota.

There are more than 900 students from China registered at the U, and scores of scholars at work on campus. Many have family with them.

Thursday and today, a few of them have set up a table at Coffman Memorial Union hoping to raise awareness and some help for victims of the disaster in southwestern China, according to the Friendship Association of Chinese Students and Scholars. It’s the largest international student association at the U.

Lingtian Kong is helping organize the effort. He’s from China’s east coast, but says the concern for victims of the quake spans all of China, and stretches all the way to Minneapolis.

“One of our scholars is leading a medical team to the earthquake area, to help care for the victims,” Lingtian said, when I talked to him about the relief efforts. He said some of what the FACSS raises may go to that effort. He also said the Chinese consolate in New York City is also accepting contributions on behalf of the quake victims.

The Friendship Association passed out flyers and took donations at Coffman. He said passersby chipped in nearly $3,000 on Thursday alone. “The response has been very good,” Liantian said. “Many people have expressed their sympathy.”

If you’re not on campus, he suggested making a donation to the U.S., Canadian or Chinese Red Cross.

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