|Jugendbotschafterreise 2010 Südkorea, ein Erfahrungsbericht der Gastgeberseite von Yonsoo Lee|
Yonsoo Lee (19/11/1993) 2nd grade in Hanyoung Foreign Language High School
I’ve always been interested in international programs where I get to meet new people and interact. I also love learning new languages and that’s how I came to learn German. I started learning German in the time I went to school in the U.S.A. and was quite enthusiastic about the language. Although I learned German, I was never provided with the realistic chance that I could use German in. Then I accepted the wonderful opportunity given by the Asia circle and through this program, I earned valuable experiences with the German students and also developed my understanding of Germany.
I’m in the German department in my school and everyone in the same department was excited when they heard that German students were going to visit our school. I was among them and fortunately I had been picked as one of the home-stay students. The German department had seen Japanese exchange students coming and going every year and we were very jealous of that program. We sometimes even wondered “ What would happen if a German student came to our school?”. We thought it was quite impossible since Germany was a very far away country unlike Japan. However, that was a misconception. On the week we started the 2nd semester, the German students came. I saw them for the first time when we were allotted the time to discuss with them. The discussion started out with Korea’s politics and economic situations, but soon we all talked about more familiar issues such as school life. Though I had prepared and taken Zertifikat Deutsch, it was a bit hard to understand what the German students were saying since the speed was very fast. That wasn’t a big barrier in our communication for everyone could mix up both English and German.
During the three days of the program, I had a lot of time to talk about different topics with my partner, Natascha. There were so many different things between Germany and Korea. It was very interesting to hear how German students of our age lived. As expected, German students seemed to have more free time to enjoy teenage life whereas Korean students spend most of the time studying. We talked about education systems, culture, manners, food, and all the other themes that we were curious about. After comparing and learning about German culture, I really wanted to visit Germany. I’ve never been to Germany before and going there would be fascinating for me. While talking, I tried to practice German and this was a really valuable time for me. Usually in school, I didn’t have an opportunity to use German in a proper conversation. Talking to a real German student was new and thrilling at the same time.
I believe that Asia Circle has provided various and new experiences both to German and Korean students. This is not an ordinary chance we get in our lives. It was a great event to share each other’s culture and thoughts. I really enjoyed participating in such a program and would like to try others in the future if offered. Later in my life, I want to work in an international firm and I think these kinds of experiences will become a sturdy basis to achieving my dream. Also my new friendship with the German students has helped me become more open-minded and social. Overall, this program gave me a treasured memory and experience that I won’t forget.