- From Sikkim to Seoul, Korea: My Experience as an International Student and Intern at Yonsei July 12, 2019
Graduate School of International Studies senior Kunzang from Sikkim
Yonsei GSIS student Kunzang Namgyal shares his experience as a Seoul Global Internship Program intern on campus as well as his future plans to bridge relations between his home, Sikkim, and South Korea.
Name: Kunzang Namgyal
Major: Global Studies (International Trade, Finance & Management)
"During my undergraduate years at a university in New Delhi, I had experienced some challenges due to a difference in cultures. So when I was looking at options for my Master’s degree, I thought that I should go to a country which is easier for me in terms of cultural similarity. During that time, I was working for the Korean embassy. While interacting with my Korean colleagues, I started to seriously consider coming to Korea for my Master's degree because my Korean friends were constantly telling me how much I'd enjoy life here. So, everything aligned and here I am in Yonsei GSIS.
Yonsei really attracted me because of the way it looks. Not just how beautiful it was but the feeling of warmth it gave. From photos, I got a sense that the school had character, which really appealed to me. There's also this sense of pride and belonging in the Yonsei identity which makes you want to stay in school for longer.
The ppalli ppalli (hurry, hurry) culture was quite overwhelming at first, but I'm adjusted now and I even ended up living a busy life here. From joining a school club to the festivities during the Yon-Ko Games (Yonkojeon), it has been really exciting! I was never interested in joining school clubs back in my undergraduate days but the clubs here appealed to me because the members in the club feel very bonded, which is something I really like.
I had the opportunity to work for Yonsei University under the Seoul Global Internship Program, where I researched problems international students faced in Korea and brainstormed ways to solve these issues. It was fun being able to talk to various people as part of the job. I also got to learn about marketing, because we had to sell our solutions to foreign students. I never did sales before so through this internship, I gained confidence because we had to go up to complete strangers to talk to them about our products.
After graduation, I hope to use my experiences to take on a role which will help to strengthen the bonds between South Korea and Sikkim. There isn't a substantial link between the two states at the moment and I hope to learn more about both sides to become a sort of middleman."