As its former faculty advisor, it was an enjoyable and significant task for me to read The Dongguk Post closely from the first page to the last. To be honest, since I quit The Post as its faculty advisor, I haven't found a chance to read The Post from cover to cover again.
Since The Post transformed its appearance from a regular newspaper format into a magazine form, the content itself seemed to have changed a lot, which is quite natural. Since The Post is published only once a month and in a magazine format, its content contained fewer news items but did include informative and amusing articles.
I enjoyed reading The Post very much; the pleasure came less from the news articles than from the essays. First of all, The Post has a well-balanced variety of wide-ranging topics covering campus, academic, social, and cultural issues as well as international issues. What I personally appreciated most was the column "I Have a Dream," in which four students articulated their future plans and ambitions in detail. The column has its strong merits due to the students' frank and concrete projections of their dreams. Since it is embodied in detailed, concrete terms, the theme of "Dream" has an appealing power for readers. For instance, Hwang Seung-hyun's "By making English a part of my daily activities, it has become a big part of my life" has the firm voice of a student who dreams of becoming a college English teacher. The article on the two security guards of Student Hall with their photos is a reminder to all of us to pay attention to those who work on campus "behind the curtains." I hope The Post continues publishing these types of articles in the coming issues. Such an article as "Food Stylists With Websites" is a helpful source of information to students who are facing the job market in confused agony. "My Life in Sydney" is a commendable essay in that it provides students with a glimpse into foreign campus life and culture. As a whole, I think the variety of articles and editorial layout are excellent.
Yet if I am asked to be somewhat critical, essays and articles that contain jargon or headache-causing issues will turn off readers of The Post. How about having special columns for introducing English papers and magazines of other universities; for instance, Ewha Voice and Yonsei Annals or students' poems and short stories, book reviews introducing new novels in English, good English dictionaries, etc.?
I can imagine how hard the reporters have to work in order to make The Post presentable and attractive both in format and content. Above all, I should not omit mentioning the painstaking job of proofreading The Post's rough drafts by Prof. Park Yoon-hee and Prof. John Sheridan.
I also agree with what Prof. Sheridan says in "The Elephant Family," and I rather prefer the new elephant statues to the former drab fountain. And I strongly second his suggestion that the waste dump and various construction related work behind the Professors' Building be removed. I have personally been much harrowed in my office by the fumes and shrill noises from that area.
Lastly, in spite of such eye-catching columns as "Elephant Ivory" and "Mission: Find Typos," I wonder how many students read The Post thoroughly. In order to utilize this wonderful product of much painstaking brainwork and expense, I suggest that the teachers of English classes such as "Current English" use The Post as their reading material now and then so that students will acquire the habit of reading The Post to improve their English.
The writer is a professor in the Dept. of English Lang. & Lit. at DU.
Kim Jung-mai email@example.com
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