Ewha Challenge Semester: merging academics & experience
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Ewha Challenge Semester: merging academics & experience
  • Jang Min-jeong
  • 승인 2015.10.15 20:57
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The school introduced a new academic system called Ewha Challenge Semester in this year’s fall semester for the first time among Korean universities.
Ewha Challenge Semester is a system in which students can continue their studies while engaging in internships and off-campus field experience. Through this system, students will be able to apply what they have learned in their majors to society. Students will be able to take credits by taking online lectures and doing field activities, which will be recognized as regular course credits.
A total of 30 students will be participating in the new system. Those who are chosen will receive financial support as well as help from professors in designing the project. Students can take up to nine credits for both off-campus activities and on and offline courses. The minimum credits will be three credits each for the same areas. The credits of activities will be recognized as liberal arts or major subjects.
The school had originally submitted Ewha Challenge Semester as a pitch project for the Advancement College Education Program (ACE) in July. ACE is a program where the Ministry of Education annually selects a certain number of universities to support them for four years and find an educationally leading model.

The plan for Ewha Challenge Semester received a positive response and was chosen as an excellent case, helping Ewha to be selected for ACE business this year. The school will be getting financial and educational support from the government for conducting the project.
There are many recommended formats of Ewha Challenge Semester that students can choose from, including topics such as entrepreneurial and cultural art activities. Through these formats, students can engage in numerous activities such as developing software, conducting internships at both domestic and foreign departments, and participating in community service or cultural art area. However, these are merely guidelines for the projects and there is no limit to the formats or range for the activities.
“The goal of Ewha Challenge Semester is to encourage students to plan a future career,” said Oh Yoon-jeong, a professor at ACE center at school. “I hope this serves as an opportunity to achieve their goals.”
The Ewha Challenge Semester will continue for two semesters and will be proceeded in three steps.
 The first step started with the recruitment for the contest that started on Oct. 7. As a result of this recruitment, one team or more will be selected from each department, and two to five teams will be selected through submitted reports and interviews in the primary assessment by Oct. 30. Then, the school will conduct a secondary assessment and individual consulting. After going through these processes, the final members will be chosen at the end of November.
The next step is to start the project with a financial support of three million won in December and designing the project with a professor assigned to each team. The students will submit an interim report at the end of January or at the beginning of February, and the remaining financial support of one million won will be provided in March.
At the end of Ewha Challenge Semester, students will complete their project and submit the final report as the third and final step.
This new system is expected to relieve the pressure of students who want to continue their studies while engaging in off-campus activities like internships.
“Previously, I saw my friends having to do an internship shortly during vacation or while postponing their studies for a while,” said Kim So-yeon, a junior of Division of Communication & Media.
“Internships surely make a good experience, but I thought it would be burdensome to take time off from school when they have to graduate soon,” Kim said. “I think Ewha Challenge Semester is going to enable students to have various experiences without having to stop their academic career, although they have to manage taking online lectures and majoring courses at the same time.”


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