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Intercultural Communication in KoreaMEET THE RUSSIAN EXCHANGE STUDENT
Han Young-eun Reporter  |
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[0호] 승인 2006.06.22  
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These days, we can easily find exchange students from Japan, China, Russia, and Mongolia on campus. Among those countries, NEWS @UOS decided upon Russia, an exotic & inaccessible country as the first country to report.

About 30 foreign exchanging students are having novel experiences in the University of Seoul(UOS), and there are three Russians in the UOS. NEWS@UOS interviewed one Russian student, Leonid Laparenok. Leonid, whose major is Business Administration, is from Moscow State University (MSU), Moscow.

Leonid has had a deep interest in Korean history since he was in high school. He wanted to know Korea better, so he decided to study in Korea as an exchanging student.

He found out that the UOS was one of the sister universities of MSU, and he chose the UOS in Korea. Leonid described the UOS in just one word, `convenient`. “The UOS has well equipped advanced studying facilities and has beautiful scenery," said Leonid. He greatly emphasized the convenience of the library. Asked what he felt was most impressive about Korea, he answered, "One thing that I was surprised me is the appellation system.

First of all, it was hard for me to address people older than me ‘Hyeong’, ‘Seon-bae’. In Russia, a little age gap doesn’t matter, unlike here. When asked if he has any difficulty as an exchange student in Korea, he said, "My present life is quite nice. I think I haven’t got big problems except sometimes I miss my family.

In UOS all exchange students have their own Buddy. A Buddy helped us to register for courses and show us places of interest in Seoul. Thanks to the Buddy, exchange students can adapt to their environment. But, for me, since I`m a pretty independent person, I`m considerably settled now regardless of the help of a Buddy."

This is the first time he has lived in Korea. He didn`t seem to have big problems with the weather and food and all those sorts of things. However, he said the Korean winter was exceedingly chilly, more than the Russian winter.

“I think there are piercing winds in Korea, we often think Russia is really cold but in actuality we do not feel very cold because there is little wind” He continued to talk when we asked about Korean food. "I love Korean food.

My favorite food is Bulgogi. I can eat everything except Danmuji. I just cannot stand it." He hardened his face remembering trying to eating it. Now, he lives in a one-room apartment near the university like usual Korean people. He said, “I’m indeed glad to experience the real life of the natives.” He plans to move to the dormitory for foreign exchange students next semester. He also added “I’m expecting to live in a dormitory with students of various nationalities.

It’ll be a good opportunity to experience intercultural difference.” NEWS@UOS sought some advice from Leonid for UOS students. “Be more independent. I think it is important to use the many exchange student programs in the UOS.

I hope that UOS students will see other countries cultures and accept different ideas. Acknowledgement of intercultural difference is a momentous thing through participating in many international programs. I wish UOS students can acquire varied experi ences.”

"Be more indepentent and I wish UOS students can acquire varied experiences.”

leonid, one of our russian exchange students
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