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Hello, North Korea Hello, Reunification

A forum hosted by North Korean Studies Student Council, “Hello Reunification” was held at November 14th, 2012. The event was prepared solely by the Student Council of the North Korean Studies Department. Students have been struggling to deal with the university’s decision to eliminate their department, so they hoped that this forum would make some small difference, and they put a lot of passion and effort in organizing this forum.

The forum had a special purpose to break stereotypes and indifference towards the reunification issue. University students in these days focus on their qualifications, work experience and other activities related to their future career. Most of the information that those people get in touch with is distorted or lacked. According to Choi Susie, the host of the forum, there was a worry within the Student Council of North Korean Studies. However, such a fact made her to prepare with more passion, so that such students can show interest to reunification.

As mentioned before, both the presenters and the host were students at the university. The first session was composed of three presentations on the concept of Youth’s thoughts on Reunification; “Ask again about Reunification” by Kim Bum, “Reunification story through textbook” by Lee Suk-mi, and “Temperature of Peace” by Jung Chan-hyung. The second session was based on the concept of “North-South Hanmadang”, involving a university student who is North Korea defector and students of North Korean Studies at Dongguk. The selection of the students who presented was based on their academic achievement, and their opinions on reunification.

There is nothing that university students can contribute to reunification now. Some argue that there is nothing that they can do about it. Choi Susie responded to it at an interview by the Post; “There is nothing that we can do. But I believe this is the moment to think about our attitudes towards reunification, not just following beliefs that have been crammed by past education. Let’s think about this; what if Korea reunifies while you are achieving your goal? How would you react to such an event? We should focus not on a sense of duty, but for objective point of view of reunification.

 

Ro Chang-hun  kazimiar@dongguk.edu

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