Religion & Spiritual Life
The staff at NYU Shanghai is available to help students find the necessary resources for their religious and/or spiritual needs. This includes accommodating dietary needs, an absence for a religious holiday and finding places for worship and meditation. Much like in the United States, legal separation of church and state exists in China, which means that religious practitioners must find services and communities off-campus. All major faiths have community centers and places of worship in Shanghai.
Religion and/or spiritual life may only be one of the many things you are thinking about in regards to study away. We suggest using this guide, Preparing for Study Away: What Should You Plan Now? to consider other aspects of your life and what will help you best prepare for your time in a new country.
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Worship and Meditation Space
Students can find a list of places of worship in the Community Resource Guide Book. If a resource is not listed here, the Student Life staff at NYU Shanghai can provide guidance and support to anyone seeking a religious community.
Yoga and meditation classes are offered on campus.
Students observing a religious holiday during regularly scheduled class time are entitled to miss class without any penalty to their grade. This is for the holiday only and does not include the days of travel that may come before and/or after the holiday. Information regarding absences due to religious observance must be provided at least seven days before the date(s) in question.
Dietary Considerations: There is no meal plan for study away students at NYU Shanghai, but there is access to shared kitchens. Students should note dietary restrictions in the housing application. Additionally, the NYU dining hall offers vegan, vegetarian, and halal options for students. There is a large Muslim community in Shanghai and it is possible to find many halal restaurants in the city. Kosher options are more limited, but students can find more information at the Chabad Jewish Center of Pudong.
Learn more about religion and spiritual life in China
We encourage you to research more about religious and spiritual communities in China. Having a background knowledge of the history, demographics and laws will ease your transition into your new country.
Here are a few places to start your research:
You may also want to reflect on the role religion and/or spirituality play in your life now, and what your expectations or needs are for your time away. Questions to consider:
- Do you have a strong connection and/or sense of belonging to a religious or spiritual group?
- Do you have a prayer or meditation space?
- Do you go to certain places for dietary needs?
- Do you celebrate certain holidays? Are these holidays you would want to celebrate during study away?