New version of winter break for students of the world
The largest international winter campus in Korea is underway with more than 460 participants from 71 schools in 18 countries.
Korea University opened the KU International Winter Campus (IWC), the largest of its kind in Korea, on Dec. 28, offering a five-week course, which consists of a three-week Academic Track and a two-week Culture Track.
First opening its doors to students in 2016, this year’s KU IWC is the largest of its kind in Korea, attracting approximately 460 students from 71 schools in 18 countries including Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong, and the United States. Compared to last year when the winter program first started, the number of participants has doubled.
On Dec. 28, at 9am, the IWC participants attended the 2017 IWC Entrance Ceremony and Orientation held in Supex Hall of LG-POSCO Hall, Korea University, kicking off the five-week program.
In recruiting the IWC faculty, Korea University invited professors from prestigious universities around the world, including King’s College London in Britain, the Australian National University in Australia, and the University of Wisconsin in the US. Together with professors from Korea University, they will teach approximately 25 subjects in fields such as business administration, economics, humanities, science, and Korean language.
Aside from classes taught by the professors, the IWC students are provided opportunities to have various cultural experiences in Korea. The cultural programs include a Korean cooking class, basketball and Taekwondo classes, calligraphy courses, K-Pop dance, and winter sports programs including skiing and skating. In particular, the skating program will be instructed by KU ice-hockey players in an effort to raise the foreign students’ awareness of the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics.
Mimicking the International Summer Campus, Korea University prepared a buddy program in order to help foreign students communicate with KU students and learn international etiquette rules. The program is also expected to help foreign participants adapt to the unfamiliar environment in Korea.
The orientation started off with a congratulatory speech delivered by Sunhyuk Kim, Vice President for International Affairs and Dean of the International Winter Campus at Korea University. “I welcome all of you to the 2017-2018 KU International Winter Campus. School breaks are not the periods during which you cease learning, but challenge yourself to have new experiences. The IWC of this year, double in size compared to last year, will offer you a great opportunity to meet new friends from various countries in the world,” he said.
As the representative of the faculty, Professor K. Praveen Parboteeah from the University of Wisconsin gave a congratulatory address to the students. He began his address by saying, “Leaving your cozy homes and coming to Korea to study will give you a lot of advantages.” He asked students to get as much as possible from their participation in the IWC, encouraging them to “learn a lot of new cultures in Korea, meet many new friends, and keep in mind that everything you learn here will be the source of your new competitiveness and experience.”
Connor O’Brian from Griffith University in Australia, who is participating in the IWC for the second time following his participation last year, said, “You can do lots of things here in Korea. There is a variety of food to eat and new friends to meet. I had a great deal of new experiences last year.” He advised newly participating students by adding, “I recommend you to actively participate in both the academic and cultural programs.” He even made the audience laugh by telling a joke, “Stay away from the Yonsei students.”
The congratulatory speeches were followed by a special program entitled ‘Gender Equality on Campus’ provided by the KU Center for Gender Equality. Students were also introduced to campus life and the activities provided as part of the IWC program. In addition, for those who wanted to study further at the graduate schools of Korea University, the university briefed them on its master’s and doctorate degree programs.
Korea University also runs another international campus during summer; the KU International Summer Campus (ISC). Starting in 2004, the ISC has gradually developed in terms of size and academic courses, drawing 1,972 students this year – the largest number of participants in its history.