안녕하세요! It’s been 2 weeks since I landed in Seoul and I’ve loved it so far. Seoul is a vibrant city that’s very fast paced (you’ve probably heard of pali-pali culture) with history being a part of modern sceneries you’ll be in for breathtaking views and Instagram shots.
I’m Vanessa and I’m studying a Bachelor of Business and went on exchange at Korea University at the start of my second year at 18! (Yes, you’re never too young or old to go on exchange as long as you’re okay to get out of your little bubble). Throughout high school I’d always wanted to go on exchange and by my first year first semester, I made the decision to apply and see what would happen and I do not regret my decision one bit.
Every day is filled with LOTS of yummy food, cheap $3 AUD bubble teas, cafes (cakes and coffee), aesthetic photoshoot areas at every corner. So, you don’t have to worry about photos for Instagram because you’d end up having a library full by the end of your exchange. Things are very cheap in Korea (maybe besides fruits and vegetables) and with Seoul being within easy access to other Asian countries (Japan, Taiwan, Singapore) make sure to plan your time wisely and fit in as many activities as possible since time moves so fast in Korea.
CAMPUS LIFE AT KOREA UNIVERSITY:
I am a business major, but on the exchange, I’m studying Media and international studies subjects as well as the Korean language.
The teaching style is quite different in comparison to Australia in which a lot of teachers have adopted an American method of education. Every course (subject) is different in the way that classes are structured, but I can say for sure that the lectures and tutorials are combined in one class where you’re with the same bunch of students for the entire duration of the course, and you don’t have different classroom locations for lecture and tutorial- it’s all together (where you might have lecture on Tuesday and tutorial/discussions on Thursday), and in this way you can imagine that the tutorials are less collaborative due to the size of a class unless discussion is a component of your subject.
What’s excellent about KU, are the Korean University Buddy Assistants (KUBA)! They organise activities every week to be done as a group (hiking, drinking, historical activities) and they offer opportunities to create long lasting friendships within the group with exchange students and the Korean buddies!
I am currently living in CJ International House with a single room, which has been comfortable and great so far. There are two kitchens per floor, and the dorm has facilities such as a gym, prayer room, laundry room etc. (however keep in mind that you have to purchase everyday living supplies yourself, eg. bedsheets, pots and pans). The great thing is though that an ahjumma is outsourced to clean the bathroom area for you so it one less thing to worry about while on exchange.
Also, a tip for those planning to live on campus…
The HILL. The hill up to the dorms is quite the workout, but your legs get used to it over the semester. Also, KU had just introduced a new course registration system which is quite the headache but trust me it will work out in the end! So, stay calm and enjoy your time. 🙂
Thinking about going on exchange?
I’d say go for it! It’s such a great opportunity to experience a country and its culture like a local and meet loads of people while you’re at it. Memories also make for great stories, so you’d never run out of things to tell your grandchildren! Also, shameless plug but to keep updated with my exchange life at Korea University follow me on IG @bynessa_.
Bachelor of Business
Australian Government New Colombo Plan Mobility Grant recipient.
For more information about the UTS Global Exchange program please visit: www.global-exchange.uts.edu.au