The 2022 Lunar New Year holiday, which began on Jan. 31, marked the beginning of a new year in the traditional lunar calendar used in East Asian countries such as China, Korea, and Vietnam. Lunar New Year is a time of family reunion. Everyone returns home for the holiday, prepares dinner with their family and sends their best wishes to relatives and friends. However, instead of celebrating with family abroad, Asian international students usually have to stay in the U.S. and celebrate with their friends.

As Lunar New Year’s Day took place during midterms week, the festival was a frantic mix of coursework and celebrations. Since Lunar New Year’s Eve was on a Monday, most students decided to have the “Reunion Dinner” over the preceding weekend. Furthermore, Lunar New Year traditions are slightly different between northern China and southern China, making Lunar New Year celebrations among the Chinese international students their own standalone exchange of customs.

Over the past week, the Nexus collected photos documenting what Lunar New Year looked like for UC Santa Barbara’s international students. As one of the most important holidays in the international student community, Lunar New Year is an iconic event that strengthens the connections among international students. In the photo story below, each photographer described their picture in their own words.



Daily Nexus Photography
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