In Korea, the relationship between the alumni and students of the same school is a precious one. The alumni act as guides to the yet-fledgling students of society, an undertaking that highlights perhaps the best of Korean culture?the elder, sharing their wisdom with and fostering the younger.
On our very own campus, the HUFS Alumni Association (HAA) has been developing a systemized approach to this culture. For two years running, HAA has successfully hosted the HUFS x HUFS Summer Camp, a 2-day long workshop where HUFS alumni mentor HUFS students. The workshop, held at the Global Campus, is a part of the HUFS x HUFS Alumni Mentoring Program. The Argus closely covered the event, following the mentors and mentees as they shared their passions and nurtured camaraderie.
The HUFS x HUFS program pairs mentors with a number of students. Throughout the year, students meet up with their designated mentor to learn potential ways they could plan the future and wisdom regarding life. However, what made this workshop special was the chance to meet other mentors and mentees.
12:30~14:00 To the Global Campus
Shuttle buses, full of eager students, took off from the front of the Main Building of the Seoul Campus at 12:30 p.m. An hour-long ride brought the participants to the dormitories of the Global Campus where students received dormitory key cards for their overnight stay.
The Argus approached students who were awaiting the opening event.
Choi So-ra (‘18, Division of French Language)
“I have great expectations for this workshop! We have a chance to meet other mentees and share what we think. Moreover, I am particularly excited about getting to meet mentors other than mine!”
Kang Hae-lin (‘16, Department of EICC)
“I am particularly excited about the Open Avengers TED-lecture-themed presentation. I have hopes it will provide me with great tips on presentation-giving. The chance to meet different mentors will also surely grant me more information on starting a career.”
15:00~16:15 Themed Lectures “Open Avengers TED”
For the first main event, students were able to choose between two alumni lecturers: Mentor JK Park, who gave a lecture titled, “Your Fate-changing Presentation,” and Mentor Young K. whose lecture titled, “Touching Hearts Through Discussion,” gave students a chance to expand their future horizons. The former provided students with critical tips on presenting oneself, not just in presentations, but in one’s career. The latter was a conversational lecture where alumni Young K. comfortably spoke to students and gave anecdotal advice.
16:30 Conversation with Mentors Abroad
The mentees gathered in the auditorium of the Centennial Complex. Alumni mentors currently based outside of Korea took their time to video-chat with the mentees, giving advice on everything from establishing oneself in a foreign environment to business practices and affairs abroad.
Shortly thereafter, the mentees were given a presentation on internships abroad. The HAA is currently providing internship opportunities through the alumni network.
20:00 Open Mentoring Tour
At the Outdoor Theater, the mentees came together to welcome the mentors who had finally arrived after their busy day schedules to connect with the mentees. The mentors’ names and careers were introduced one by one as they stepped into the spotlight. Taking note of the mentors’ careers, the mentees could choose to spend time with up to two mentors of their choice, with each segment in rotation.
For the second part of this event, participants were to share their newly begotten relationships by lighting candles together in the quiet of night, but this was stopped short by unexpected rainfall. Everyone was ushered into a lounge at HUFS Dorm, where they enjoyed a late-night snack and one another’s company. The mentors and mentees talked and laughed far into the night.
10:00 “Wooridongnae Peter Pan”
Refreshed from sleep, the alumni and students participated in broadcasting station MBC’s program, “Wooridongnae Peter Pan.” Through this program, mentors and mentees donated unused, but useable items under their possessions which are to be sold through the Goodwill store. The participants showed and explained to each other what they had to donate. There was warmth and laughter all around.
11:00 Mentor-Mentee Talk Concert & Presentation Ceremony
As the program came to a close, the mentors and mentees engaged in a feedback session. The relationships between the mentors and mentees were noticeably warmer. The HAA awarded scholarships to selected students and all students were given participation certificates. Afterwards, students and alumni were shuttled back to the Seoul Campus.
During the workshop, The Argus had the chance to speak to HUFS Alumni Association President Min Dong-seok. He had something to say to us HUFSans.
Min Dong-seok (‘73, Department of Russian)
“To the readers of The Argus, whose dreams go beyond the borders of Korea, I earnestly hope that you will yourselves pave the path to a life of success. The HAA will be there to give guidance and direction, so take on the world with confidence.
“The objective of the HAA is to create a more systemized program that will better accommodate the fostering of alumni-enrollee relationships. We are in the early years of creating a manual for this program, and it is with great hopes that we lay its foundations.”
To date, 155 alumni mentors and 520 student mentees have become participants of HUFS Ｘ HUFS. HAA expects this number to grow as they approach their third year. Moreover, it will open its office on the 3rd floor of the Global Hall, which will serve as the headquarters for planning and overseeing future mentoring programs to further strengthen alumni-enrollee relationships. Borrowing the words of President Min, “With hope, the participating mentees may one day become mentors themselves─a circulation that will be the positive force that will help HUFS take another leap forward.”
By Park Chang-hwan
Associate Editor of Theory & Critique Section