Those who know Marjon a little bit better also know that we have well organized International Office. It is located on the second floor of the main block and the whole place is decorated with pictures, artwork and various colourful objects from many different cultures. I used to wonder where they all come from. Well now I know. A recent donation that came to the archives is all the souvenirs that Malaysian students brought as gifts.
For more than thirty years Marjon worked in partnership with more countries and Universities abroad than you can shake a stick at. Nowadays any course is open for foreign students, but also there are special programmes such as International Foundation Programme and Academic English Preparation Courses so you can imagine how many people came over here over the years. The gifts they left behind vary greatly. Some are simple souvenirs, others are more elaborate. There are pictures, scrolls and pennants. Some showed how little I know about Malaysia- the strange studded brass frame is actually a mirror with a little doors.
Some of those things must have been in the possession of the International office for years; some are recent as the newspaper that I found alongside the gifts. It is dated 2013 and titled ‘University’s farewell to Malaysians’. It shows that people still are coming to us from Malaysia to get their education. We live worlds apart, but for a short while we have lived and worked together. And here is the proof that we will always remember and treasure our friends from far away: