September 6, 2019 at 3:40 pm

South Korean Students Visit OHIO for Culture, Communication

CUFS students and faculty from ELIP and CUFS gather in front of Nelson Court after lunch for a group photo.

CUFS students and faculty from ELIP and CUFS gather in front of Nelson Court after lunch.

By H. Keira Park

Ohio University’s Linguistics Department, coordinated through its English Language Improvement Program (ELIP) invited 14 students from Cyber Hankuk University of Foreign Studies (CUFS) for a one-week Summer Intensive Communication and Culture Program from July 6-13.

The Linguistic’s Department’s ELIP Program has been collaborating with CUFS for the past two years and together offer two online joint certificates—one in Business Communication and one in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages and Teaching English to Young Learners.

“I am very glad that the students came to visit Athens and got to see how beautiful our campus is!” says Dr. H. Keira Park, Program Coordinator and ELIP Assistant Professor of Instruction. “Even though their visit was just for a week, it was nice to witness how much learning can happen within such a short period of time when you have a well-prepared program. The students from CUFS had so much fun participating in various campus and community-based projects, which allowed them to focus on both academic and global communication and American culture. Despite being only one week in length, the program, we believe, enhanced these student’s academic and intercultural communication abilities as well as their understanding of similarities and differences between American and Korean cultures.”

Keira Park and Rickey Larkin speak to students about the Multicultural, Women's, and LGBTQ Centers.

Dr. H. Keira Park and Rickey Larkin speak to students about the Multicultural, Women’s, and LGBTQ Centers.

Professor Robert Bern, one of the professors from CUFS who accompanied the students, knows how difficult it is to run a program that is sufficiently meaningful and engaging given the limited time. “This program wouldn’t have been successful without the collaboration that was developed between the two universities. It was rewarding to see how at each turn we were able to come together to brainstorm and implement ways of serving such a varied student population,” says Bern.

What did students love? Being in the community. They participated in a variety of academic and intercultural assignments and projects which led them to visit local stores and gave them the opportunity to present on things they found interesting in the community. It also allowed them to visit centers on campus and create podcasts about life in Athens.

“What I enjoyed the most was visiting the LGBTQ center on campus during one of the class projects,” states student Jae-hee Kwon. “I learned a lot about how important it is to have a system that offers a place like the LGBTQ center on campus so that everyone on campus feels supported.

Insik, another student, noted, “I really appreciate how much effort the professors at Ohio University and CUFS have put into this program. Each assignment was carefully chosen to help us improve our academic and intercultural communication skills and focused on building different communication skills at the same time. Above all, they were really fun!”

Park said that ELIP is looking forward to future summer programs to come through their partnership with CUFS and other Korean universities, with the aim of developing students’ abilities to communicate with a global perspective.

Furthermore, as well as CUFS, ELIP is proud to have developed partnerships with other Korean universities over the last few years and is currently creating relationships with other international universities.

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