Ewha is seeking to expand overseas opportunities for its students. One way that Ewha pursues this objective is through its student exchange program. Because Ewha can only send as many students as it receives, the first step to enlarging its exchange program is, naturally, attracting more international students.
I have met a dozen exchange students currently studying at Ewha to learn how they regard Ewha as a host institution. Overall, students were much pleased with Ewha’s supportive system. Several students, however, made a couple critical suggestions regarding some difficulties they encountered during their stay. To allow the students to express their ideas freely, I offer them anonymity.
The majority opinion regarding the OGA (Office of Global Affairs) was that the staff members were greatly helpful. Few students admitted, however, that, at times, the OGA was not as resourceful and responsive as they hoped. Kelly(alias), from the , recollected, “I had a problem with my visa but got no help from the OGA anytime I needed it. I felt like I was on my own on figuring it all out”. Many international students, in fact, reported to have struggled with issues regarding their visa, valid identification, and bank accounts. Unfortunately they weren’t able to find satisfactory help from the OGA.
Another chief concern among the international students regarded issues of class enrollment. Mary(alias), from , claimed, “a lot of business classes were scheduled at the same time and as a business student I wasn’t able to attend many from my choice”. Most students studying abroad are juniors and seniors back at their home school. While some students seek to explore the diverse courses offered in the foreign environment, others cannot avoid focusing on their major for graduation.
A related issue concerning course registration was the difficulty of scheduling around the Korean Language class. The class begins every morning at 8:30am and ends at 11:10am. Students enrolled in the Language class are not able to take any courses that are offered in the first, second or third period. Exchange students found it most difficult to schedule around these class periods because many of Ewha’s classes met at least once during those times throughout the week.
At the end of the interview, Kelly mentioned, “overall tough I’ve had an exceptional time here without major problems”. Despite some challenges, the exchange students maintain that they had an unforgettable semester at Ewha.