From this semester, Creative Communication Center opened a new program called ‘Korean Clinic’. This program is to help international students who have troubles with writing reports or essays in Korean.
Any students who need help with writing Korean essays or papers could apply for this program through uDrims. They first upload their writing files that need corrections and register for the meeting times. The clinic proceeds in one-on-one method. Each undergraduate student is assigned to a graduate student mentor, and graduate student assigned with Ph.D. student of professor to receive help. Before this program was launched, international students usually asked for help about their papers from professors or people who are fluent in Korean. However, since ‘Korean Clinic’ enables international students to receive corrections in a more stable way, it seems like the environment is improving for exchange students to catch up with courses they take with Korean students.
Huang Lan-Lan, a Chinese student who is studying at Dongguk University’s Graduate School of Korean Education, said that the program was very helpful. Huang, who stayed in Korea for one and a half years, said that she used to ask her friends or professors for help about her essays. However, with the opening of this program, Huang was able to ask questions or recommendations more freely. She took the clinic at the beginning of September, when she had to prepare a presentation of her research paper. She told that she was able to gain new writing skills such as ellipsis, and also learned ways to write Korean more fluently.
On the other had, this program is about to be put into a situation of abolition due to the low demand from international students. Currently, the number of students who applied for Korean Clinic program is about 22. The program is offering exemption of tuition fees to students who work as mentors, and also provide certain amount of money to professors. If the demand from student does not rise, unfortunately the program could disappear due to monetary problem.
Huang says, “I really want to recommend this helpful program to other international students.” She added that “They must be having a hard time writing in Korean just like I used to. A lot of international students are still unfamiliar with writing while they are quite fluent in speaking. I think that Korean Clinic should be informed to more students.” Huang also suggested several improvements that could be done. She first said that the meeting place was too difficult to find and too far. The clinic is help at Information and Culture Center, and many students had difficulties in getting to the place. International students usually stay at HyeHwa Hall, so it could be a tight schedule for some of them to come and go. Moreover, Huang says that it would be much better if the mentor was related to the mentee’s major. In Huang’s case, since the professor was not familiar with technical terms from her major, she had to explain the meaning to the professor, and this sometimes made her hesitate to register for the program, and chose to ask for her friends or professors at he department for help.
The program is just at the start, so through improvements, “Korean Clinic’ could grow up to the representative program that supports international students to well adapt to the new environments. Right now the program needs more participations and attentions from students.
Choi Young-eun firstname.lastname@example.org
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