Having signed up for the Korean Summer Exchange Programme, I got to experience staying in Korea by myself for three weeks. The opportunity to participate in the Korean Summer Exchange Program and to study in Dankook University became one of the best decisions that I made during my time in university.
Attending Korean class in Dankook University was one of the best parts of the program. Korean class was so much fun for everyone. Students were arranged in different classes respectively – from Beginner, Intermediate to Advanced classes – based on the level of Korean Language tested through both writing and speaking tests. In the Korean class, we made new friends from all over the world and got along with the teachers, who were so friendly and caring. We managed to build good relationships with our teachers during our short stay there.
Besides that, Dankook University also prepared many after-class activities for exchange students, which can be selected based on interest. I chose to join in two activities – going on a visit to Seoul and watching “Nanta”, the non-verbal musical. The places that we visited during Seoul tour included the National Museum, Gwanghwamun, Sejong Square and Seoul Tower. By visiting these landmarks, we learned more about Korea; the culture, the tradition, and the beauty of it. Travelling around with a large group of friends was both fun and exciting. It was an unforgettable memory for me.
Other than having classes and activities, we were allowed free time (after the end of class at 1 p.m.) to travel around Korea. We went shopping at “Gangnam”, had a delicious meal at “Myeongdong”, went sightseeing at “Hangang” and even tried on the beautiful “Hanbok” at Bukchon Hanok Village. We were also allowed to spend our weekends going on small trips to other cities, such as Busan or Jeju Island.
The day-to-day things were a lot more convenient in Korea. There were convenience stores everywhere where we could easily grab a quick bite to settle our hunger. Commuting between places was also simple with the T-money Card. We could even enjoy free Wi-Fi wherever we went! The Korean natives were so kind and polite. They were always willing to help us even with the limited Korean words that we knew. However, we were always careful to respect them by being aware of the etiquettes practiced in Korea.
We barely scratched the surface when it came to travelling and exploring more of Korea, but it helped me learn and understand more of myself. This experience was something I had to go through on my own. For example, when walking down on an unfamiliar street, I had to overcome the sense of insecurity. I was able to realise what I can and cannot do. Throughout this journey, I learned to become better through the different decisions I made. I will never regret having all of these precious experiences in my life.
Last but not least, I am truly glad and thankful to be a part of this program. If you are interested, go and sign up for Korean Exchange Program!