On this week’s Students’ Perspective of CAU series, Uzbek student Noila gives you her thoughts about being an exchange student in Korea!
Can you please introduce yourself?
Hello, my name is Noila and I am doing a double major in English language literature and Korean. I study at the University of Uzbekistan and this is my second semester at CAU. I will be at CAU until the end of the spring semester.
Why did you decide to come to Korea?
As I said before, my major is Korean and I have been learning Korean for almost 2 years. I decided to come to Korea because I wanted to improve my Korean and be able to practice speaking Korean more frequently.
What are some important tips you can give to new exchange students coming to Chung-Ang University?
- Don’t be shy
- Be friendly
- Learn Korean basics – a lot of Koreans are shy so its better if you are the first one to speak to them
- Don’t skip your classes!
What are some similarities and differences in Korea compared to your home country?
We have many similarities, for example, we have to respect elders. But academically, we don’t have credits. Our university gives us mandatory subjects to take but in Korea we have an option to choose what courses we would like to take.
What are some Korean foods you suggest to try?
If you are Islamic, it will be difficult to find halal food around Korea, but I recommend trying egg fried rice (계란 볶음밥), bibimbap (비빔밥), vegetable gimbap (야채 김밥) , and cheese tteokbokki (치즈 떡볶이).
What do you think is a cultural aspect of Korea that attracts foreigners?
I think Korean people preserved their own traditional culture and foreigners can experience traditional parts of Korea. Even while sightseeing the modern capital city, we can see ancient palaces such as Gyeongbokgung Palace which is in the center of the city.
What is your most memorable experience in Korea?
I had a lot of memorable experiences in Korea. DMZ trip was the most memorable since I had the opportunity to see North Korea with my own eyes, wear an army uniform and having the opportunity to visit the tunnels. It was a very good experience! Also, I have visited many places around Seoul such as royal palaces, Hanok village, Hongdae and Itaewon. I also visited the Edelweiss Swiss Theme Park in Gapyeong. These are some places that you must visit!
Is there anything else you would like to share that may help current or future students at CAU?
- If you are Islamic, Itaewon is a good place to find halal foods from a variety of vendors
- Travel a lot
*Photos are provided by Noila