I want to thank Democracy Prep for allowing us scholars to be given the opportunity to visit different parts of the world and opening up our horizon. I had the incredible opportunity to visit South Korea with many of my peers and incredible Democracy Prep staff members. I am honored to have had this experience.
I was able to finally use the Korean I learned for the past three years and interact with strangers in Korea. My Korean teacher really prepared me for this because of the dedication she took to teach us a new language. Before going to Korea, we took several classes that involved learning about Korean culture, the trip outline, and our homestay family! I initially was scared about the homestay because I had never stayed with a different family, and I felt it would be hard to communicate with them. As it turns out, my favorite part about Korea as a whole would be meeting the Mansu High School boys and my homestay family!
As soon as we got off the bus, all we saw was the South Korean scholars yelling from the window making us feel like superstars! I realized that the students are talented because of the outstanding performances they did for us during the Talent Show. My homestay brother was very respectful and a gentleman. It was great interacting with him and his friends. They took us to eat delicious desserts, to bowl and to the arcade. Meeting my homestay family felt like I was at home because they were very welcoming. Although they couldn’t really interact with us, they tried their best.
We had one full day where we had to actually become a Mansu High School student. We attended classes and ate lunch with the students. Their classes were very interesting, and the teachers were generous. The teachers planned out lessons where they would incorporate us as well. The students translated and helped me not feel lost. It was heartbreaking when we had to depart. I grew a strong connection with the Mansu scholars. We took a lot of pictures and exchanged social media names to continue our friendship. I still talk to the students from Mansu High School, and I hope that one day I can go back to Korea and visit them.
My trip to Korea helped me realize what I want to do for a living. I want to become a doctor that travels around the world, specifically to third world countries, to provide my assistance to individuals who cannot afford to go to hospitals when they get sick. I want to study abroad in college and meet new people. I am hoping they teach me about their culture, and I want to continue to expand my perspective on different countries.