Adventures of the Seoul

Growing up, I was fascinated with Asian culture. I was intrigued by the unique cultural differences from the other side of the world.  As a global studies major, I was able to dive more in depth into learning about other countries and cultures. This is what sparked my drive to start my study abroad experience.  With the help of Auburn Abroad advisers, I was able to easily narrow down my search and found which Asian country was right for me. Thus began my semester exchange in Seoul, South Korea.

Living in another country was an amazing experience. I attended Sejong University in Seoul, South Korea. Sejong is a small private university with a beautiful campus that is centrally located to restaurants and shopping.  At Sejong University, I lived in the international dormitory on campus. Living in the international dormitory was a great way to make friends that were sharing the same experience as me. I became friends with many students from around the world.

South Korea is a very small country in Asia. However, it is full of life. With top leading entertainment industries, South Korea has a huge market of movies, television shows, idols, and performing arts. My favorite thing to do on the weekends was to go to a concert or an award show to see the top idols in South Korea perform. I enjoyed watching performances not only by idols, but also by street performers. Throughout the bright districts in Seoul, there were numerous street performers including dancers, singers, and even magicians doing magic tricks to entertain people passing by.  I loved to sit and watch them interact with the audience.

There was never a dull moment living in one of the largest cities in the world. My favorite things in life tend to be fashion and food. I was able to attend Seoul Fashion Week with my friends and met designers that have been featured multiple times in Vogue. I was also able to attend my friend’s university fashion show where I learned more about the differences of fashion in Asian style and American style.

Going to restaurants with friends was another fun thing to do in Korea. Seoul, being the fourth largest city in the world, had a never-ending supply of restaurants.  Eating authentic Korean food was a real treat. In most restaurants, I would cook my meats right at the table.  I also tried new foods that I had never eaten before, such as, pig feet, cow intestines, raw beef, and fish. However, what I loved most were the desserts. The desserts were masterpieces, almost too beautiful to eat.

Another amazing thing about South Korea is their transportation system. I could get on the subway, train, or bus and travel to any destination within the country.  I was able to travel to Busan, a beach town, and Daegu, a mountainous region. I was also able to fly to Jeju, Korea’s famous paradise island. I never expected there to be so much to do within a short span of time. Taking a weekend trip to the other side of the country could be done with ease.

Having the opportunity to study abroad was an experience that I will never forget. If given the opportunity, I believe students should go for it. Based on my incredible experiences, I believe no one would regret it.  There is a world waiting to be explored. Studying abroad would be a great starting point.  Auburn Abroad is not only a great way to learn more about the world, but also a great way to learn more about yourself.

Kaydee Johnson
Liberal Arts 2018 Exchange Program at Sejong University in Seoul, South Korea

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