If you want to learn about Korea, you don’t have to travel a thousand miles across the ocean or watch a movie by yourself. You can learn about Korean life directly from Chanwoo Moon, an exchange student from South Korea.
Chanwoo Moon is one of the leaders of the Hangul Club, which teaches others about Korean culture.
Moon started the club because he thought it would be good to share Korean language and culture with Grace students. “It will help them expand their perspective,” said Moon.
He also wanted to do something for the glory of God. He described how God has helped him stay at Grace for another semester, and while he did not have any material things, he realized that he could teach and have others learn about Korean culture. Moon said that through this, “we can be one within God.”
Let’s Learn Hangul
The Hangul Club is the official name for the club because “Hangul” is the word for the Korean language.
Every Wednesday afternoon the club meets at 2 p.m. in a Philathea classroom. The meetings last for about an hour-and-a-half and nearly twenty students attend.
Some weeks they listen to a lecture on the the school system in Korea, and other weeks they write words on each other’s back to helpl them learn Hangul.
Learning Hangul is not as easy as it may seem. Zoe Rozsa attended when students were learning Hangul.
They played telephone and wrote on each other’s backs and then attempted to write the character on the board. For Rozsa it was difficult. “It was really humbling…I’ve been able to have the flip side feeling of being in his shoes [Moon] because my mouth can’t make these sounds.
Rozsa is the director of Mosaic, which is the umbrella over all the various cultural groups on campus. She is responsible for empowering their passions with resources and leaders.
The Hangul Club is exciting for her, “because it’s so good to see people there to support Chanwoo and are now interested in Korean culture.”
The Learning Curve
Club members so far have learned the characters of the Korean language, have compared school systems in America and South Korea, and have learned about Korean food.
On March 21, the group went to Carlos Tellez’s home for Korean food. Tellez is the director of Global Initiatives, the office responsible for study abroad and Go Encounter trips.
Tellez’s house was full; nearly twenty-five people had the opportunity to taste different Korean foods.
Christopher Wilson, another leader for the club, says his favorite activity so far has been the food party.
Wilson joined the club because he loves learning about other cultures. The club is a positive thing for Grace, according to Wilson. “Grace is making a huge effort to get students to think globally, and Korean club is a great way to introduce a new culture in a fun environment.”
In the future, Moon is planning on teaching about the Korean church, Korean history, KPop (Korean music), and Korean drama.
A Korean movie night is also being planned to share with the students. The club is open to anyone who wishes to learn more about the Korean Culture. The Hangul Club is one of the newer cultural clubs on campus and for Tellez, having groups like Hangul “helps the rest of us understand and appreciate cultural differences.”
Tellez believes that Hangul “can help the rest of us experience a variety of cultural heritages that will make us a more accepting community.”
Story by Katie Graham | Staff Writer | firstname.lastname@example.org