GI YOON KIM
(Sorry, this happens to be in Korean. 🙂 Don’t worry, this will be the only one!)
제1기 해외기자단 김지윤
후기를 쓰려고 하니까 일단 지난 일년 동안 제가 얼마나 성실히 기자 활동을 했는지 생각해보게 됩니다 아..밀린 기사부터 써야하는데….행동보다는 말이 앞섰던 적이 많은 것 같아서 조금 아니 아주 많이 부끄럽다는 생각이 듭니다. 그럼에도 불구하고 지난 일년 동안의 해외기자단 활동은 제게 참 소중하고 유익한 경험이었습니다. Continue reading
My experience as a Ministry of Unification Overseas Correspondent has given me so many opportunities to explore the various issues surrounding the reunification issue, but more valuably chances to get to know people serving in all areas within this cause.
Even six months after the DMZ tour and the rest of the volunteer activities, the late night conversations I had with my North Korean and South Korean teammates still resonate. I had advocated for North Korean human rights on my campus with my student organization for years, but when I shared a beer with a North Korean defector woman ten years my senior did I realize that I was rooting for a better future for people like her. There were faces, names, and personalities to the distant “North Koreans” I was praying for now. Continue reading
Last summer was the first time I was in Korea for longer than a short visit. It was also the first time I met Korean students, people who worked for the Korean government, and North Korean defectors. In a nutshell, August was a whirlwind learning experience:
- We attended an orientation, where we met the other interns as well as the Vice Minister
- Attended workshops on the new social media of Facebook and Twitter
- Visited the Joint Security Area (JSA)
- Toured the DMZ (during which we had discussions, heard testimonies from the North Korean defectors on the trip, and learned about the historical sites from subsequent tourguide lectures)
- Visited Hana Centers in Gyeonggi Province and learned about the settlement process North Koreans go through when they come to South Korea
- Volunteered and lived amongst the students at the Hangyeoulleh Middle and High School for students who had come from North Korea (Some of us were interviewed for radio programs during this time as well.) Continue reading
Yesterday, I returned from a month long trip in Korea. I ate a chicken’s foot, avoided using the traditional Korean toilet (imagine a horizontal urinal built into the ground), went clam digging, survived the most humid summer in my life, and had my first beer. For a 21 year old college student in South Korea, all of this is the norm, a typical day. For a foreigner like myself, this even approaches “Weird/interesting Travel Experiences.” But there was one detail about my month that made it out of the ordinary—I experienced it all with North Korean defectors.