- Learning How To Bridge Gaps Between Countries During My Summer at Yonsei February 15, 2019
Yonsei International Summer School participant Iroha Joy Richman from Japan
Name: Iroha Joy Richman
Home University: International Christian University (Japan)
"I first came to study at Yonsei University for the summer to gain a broader perspective and see more sides of Korean life and culture. Because of the past history and cultural differences between Korea and Japan, I had expected to feel a sense of initial awkwardness when arriving in Seoul. But after coming to Yonsei and talking with the local students from the summer school as well as outside the program, I came to understand how people can overcome history and have a flexible mind about different issues.
My ‘Contemporary Korean Culture Wave’ class was eye-opening. It was taught by an American professor who had been living in Korea for 30 years, and it was interesting to learn about Korea from an American academic’s perspective – he perceived Korea both from the inside and the outside, and therefore had a broad view of Korean society and culture. It made me more interested in finding out more sides of Korea in a deeper way. I am currently doing my liberal arts coursework and so I had not decided on my major yet, but after taking this course I made up my mind to take Asian Studies as my major. With this major, I can explore the culture, history and international relations around Asia.
My encounters with Korean people led me to think that when I returned to Japan and if I tried enough, I could change people’s minds if I showed them what I experienced here. Instead of thinking that I can’t do anything because I am just a student, I want to help the two countries bond together and change the mindsets of people. It would not be easy, but if I could help improve the relationship between the two countries, I would be very happy."
* Yonsei International Summer School (YISS) is an integral part of campus life based on a unique blend of Korean and global cultures. The 2019 program offers over 100 courses and over 50 corporate/research internships, with activities including a field trip across northeast Korea, Mud Festival, Folk Village Tour, SM Town tour and DMZ tour. Students can choose from 6-week and 4-week options. Experience the legendary “Yonsei Spirit” by spending an unforgettable summer in the heart of Seoul, Korea.