Friday, July 9, 2010

Day 11: Farewell to Korea University

Dr. Lee singing at the "Norebong" or "Song Room". We celebrated our last class with a little bit of karaoke!
We had bulgogi, rice, and Korean wine for our farewell dinner!

The girls... we decided it was time to look decent! Everyone's first comment was, "Wow, what did you do? I did not recognize you!"

Elizabeth presented on teenage pregnancy prevention in the U.S. When comparing statistics in Korea and the U.S. The Korean teenage pregnancy rate is 2.9% per 1,000 South Korean teenagers. In recent years in the U.S., the percentage was around 71% for teenage mothers between the ages of 15-17 years. According to our classmates, teenage pregnancy is almost "taboo". No one really talks about it with their children, terms are used discretely, and in the school systems girls are the only ones taught about "sex education" not even prevention. If a teenage girl becomes pregnant in Korea, she can no longer attend school. Instead there are centers for pregnant mothers that offer vocational resources. In the U.S., however, pregnant teenagers are still allowed to attend school, and it has become so much more prevalent over the years that no one looks down upon a pregnant female attending school. Causes of teen pregnancy in Korea differ than those in America in the sense that females are more likely to become pregnant due to sexual abuse, dating violence, socioecnomic factors, childhood environments, and lack of knowledge about proper birth control. In the U.S., the number one factor for teen pregnancy is peer pressure and lack of parental communication with their children, especially between mothers and daughters. There has been proven research in the U.S. that the more parents communicate with their children about the consequences of sex, the more likely the chances are of their children waiting longer before they begin engaging in sexual activity.
Sweet friends at our farewell dinner.
Our last class at Korea University. What an incredible class we had together for 2 weeks. We learned so much about one others' culture and the differences and similarities between us all. The three of us (Jana, Erin, & Elizabeth) realized that there is only so much you can learn from a book about multicultural diversity and awareness. Through our experiences at Korea University, our knowledge and awareness of our own culture and background has greatly increased, as well as our knowledge and awareness of Korean culture. Not only did we "do diversity" but we actually "lived diversity" over the past two weeks. There is no greater way to learn about a culture than to immerse yourself in it. We now have an even greater appreciation for Korean culture, and we also realize there is still so much more to be learned. As our journey in Korea ends, we would like to thank our classmates and new friends. We will forever be grateful for all the many things you taught us. We will carry the knowledge, wisdom, and memories we gained from you with us always.

Coffee mugs from our sweet friends at Korea University!

1 comment:

  1. Beautifully stated!
    Congratulations to you all.