Korean Exchange Students Visit DHS

Alexandra Stassinopoulos, Editor-in-Chief

On Friday, February 16, 2016, DHS was visited by a group of students from Busan International School, a boarding school in South Korea.


The students were in the U.S. for two weeks as part of an exchange program with their school. Their visit to DHS was a way for them to learn about the US school system.


The students visited DHS during 4th and 5th period. During 4th period, the Korean students ate lunch with and gave a presentation to the FMP mentors with fourth period GAEL.


Shayari Saha, one of the FMP who ate lunch with the students from Busan, said that the presentation was her favorite part of the day.


“They did a presentation about famous structures, food, and the language. They also fed us some snacks and danced for us. They did a K-Pop dance and then a traditional Korean dance with costumes. It was really interesting to see.”


Shayari Saha


After lunch, the Korean students were given a tour of DHS similar to the one that all DHS students get during Freshman orientation. Because the Dublin students giving the tour were so familiar with DHS, they didn’t realize quite how much interesting the Korean students would find our campus. However, not only did the visiting students enjoy exploring campus, they were also amazed at how different our school is from theirs.


“Given how many students take our school for granted, it was an astonishing change to walk with kids who were excited will simply taking a tour of DHS,” marveled junior Sina Sharzad, one of the tour guides. “Mr. Rubio was kind enough to let us walk into his classroom during the last five minutes of 5th period. The Korean students were awestruck by how colorful and filled the classroom was. Korean classrooms are usually very plain, therefore, they were extremely excited to see various posters and flags on the walls, bookshelves around the room, different forms of technology, and student work hanging all around the classroom.”


Although part of the exchange students’ excitement was simply because of how different the classrooms looked, junior Neil Bedi explained that the Korean students also have a much more rigid system and a much longer school day. “They don’t have all of the fun activities and stuff that we do,” Bedi explained. “Their education system is much more strict in terms of what they must learn.” For Bedi, learning about the differences between the Korean school system and our own was one of the highlights of the students’ visit. “It was really cool to see how varied their school is from ours, especially how much freedom we have in our classes compared to theirs.”


DHS junior Ally Loo, who was also a tour guide, was also struck by the differences between our school day and the exchange students’.


“A major difference that I found was that the students in Korea spend an incredible amount of time studying compared to what we spend. They’re in school from 7 am to about 10 or 11 pm, which sounds completely crazy to us, but it’s normal for them. During the day, they only have about an hour to spend doing extracurriculars that they enjoy.”


Although they only visited DHS for one day, the Korean exchange students made a positive impression on the students they met.


“My favorite part of their visit was being able to talk and get to know each of the students,” said Ally Loo, when reflecting on the visit. “I was able to become friends with several of them and I still keep in touch with them via social media.”


Although the exchange students have since returned home, hopefully their school will come visit again next year!