Beautiful place, but discrimination in the accommodation January 23, 2021

By (University of Warwick) - abroad from 08/01/2019 to 06/14/2020 with

Seoul National University: Seoul - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Avoid the global residence!

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 0-2 weeks

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

The teaching was good, but there were very few to pick from if you did not speak Korean fluently

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Poor, the administration of the program was very difficult. There multiple portals that were hard to navigate as they were mostly written in korean.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The discrimination I faced by the two young graduate students who were in charge of the residence was disgusting. One man remarked to several european students living in different rooms that their room was "disturbing" although they were left completely clean. In comparison the same man in charge of the residence had befriended another exchange student who openly admitted to smoking in his room and had taken several guests back to his room at night which was against the rules. It was clear that this man did not like certain people and made their lives very difficult. The university make it extremely difficult to get a place in the accommodation in the first place as they expect you to send a number of different forms such as an x ray scan within about a week of notice, and when you get there unfortunately for some you will have to deal with racism and discrimination from those who are in charge of the building.

* Food:

The food was good and there were great chefs at the lunch halls

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

The people who were in charge of SNU buddy were really lovely and helped exchange students settle in.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? Yes

I would avoid going in the global halls residence, but Seoul is great city and the university provides good education.


* Money: How easily were you able to live on a student's budget?

(1 = not very easy/$200+ on food & personal expenses/week, 2.5 = $100/week, 5 = very easily/minimal cost)

Korea has good living circumstances and it can be very affordable. However, the shops underneath the accomodation overcharge which so if you are not immediately aware of the shops outside of the campus, you can easily overspend.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? £40 - £60 - under 100,000 won.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? For food, use the cafeterias, and take a trip around gwanak-gu first so that you know how to spend affordably. To get housing outside of campus is extremely expensive, so it's important to get a place on campus, but as I have noted those who run the global accommodation put those in charge who show a lot of discriminatory behaviours.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
How much did the program encourage you to use the language?

0 = No encouragement, 5 = frequent encouragement to use the language

You could take a foreign language course but it was ridiculously expensive, and the university really over charge. The student's run a course that is under 5 pounds to join. It's of course not run by professionals, but if you haven't got the money it's good to help you start. I've given this half a star because that was the student's choice, not the universities.

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Beginner
How many hours per day did you use the language?
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? Learn hangeul before going and use talktomeinkorean to learn the basics.

Direct Enrollment/Exchange

* Did you study abroad through an exchange program or did you directly enroll in the foreign university? Exchange

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
  • Other
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • International Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • International Students
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with? 10+

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • The students
  • The surroundings of the campus
  • The food
* What could be improved?
  • Removing those discriminating in the global residences
  • Remove those discriminating in the global residence
  • Remove those discriminating in the global residence
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? It is useful to learn the language before going.

Reasons For Studying Abroad

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The Outright Urbanite
A social butterfly, you're happiest in bustling cities with hip people, and took advantage of all it had to offer. You enjoyed the nightlife, and had fun going out dancing, and socializing with friends. Fun-loving and dressed to the nines, you enjoyed discovering new restaurants, shops, cafes, and bars in your host country.