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Thursday,February 20,2020
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Chilly Wind of Unemployment


             
Chilly Wind of Unemployment
             
                                                   
             All the   streets are   already in   an atmosphere   of Christmas. Various kinds of trees and Santa  Claus dolls are displayed in  shop windows  and carols ring  out of the shops.
             Regardless of that, however, the campus is filled with  darkness and melancholy. It's hard to find smiles on the faces of students,  especially soon-to-be graduates.  The unprecedented low employment rate is more chillier than  the early winter wind.
            
             The difficulty of  finding a  job had  an influence  on special lectures which will be  given during this coming winter vacation. Dongguk Univ. is offering some courses aimed at seniors  about Information  Technology that  is considered important in the job market. In addition, there will be an employment lecture next semester focusing on practical information  about job-hunting   and will be  a two-credit course.
            
             All students  are affected  by  the high  jobless rate. They're seldom   willing to   join in  student  activities. School  papers,  including  the  Post,   and clubs   have difficulty in recruiting new faces. Students are locked  in fierce competition  with each  other for  good  marks to gain an upper hand in getting a decent job.
            
             This current   on campus  makes me   look at  some people  who  are  going  against  the  times,  especially "Freeters." The  June 13  issue of  Newsweek explained them as  follows: "Freeter   is not just  an  employment category but a lifestyle.  Freeters work only  when they need  cash,  hang  out,  travel  whenever  possible  and celebrate their rejection of  their parents' old workaholic lifestyle."
            
             Some Japanese freeters write  down "freeter" in  their resume,  and   it is   recognized   in Japanese   society. However, Korean society  looks at them  as slackers, or backsoo in Korean, due to its  Confucian ideology that a  man should have a good job and lead a family.
            
             I'm not suggesting that you should live like a freeter.  I just have  a high  opinion of them  for enjoying  what they want to do. It  could be meaningful to  take a look at another lifestyle while most  university students want to lead  a stereotypical  life. The  uniformity of   Korean society excluding various ways  of living may  have put youngsters into a spiral of unemployment.

Choi Jong-taek  feeling9@orgio.net

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