Maggie Zhang, Seoul
Hello, this is Mengyuan (Maggie) Zhang, a senior marketing concentrator at SMG. I studied abroad in Seoul, Korea in spring 2014, which was the second semester of my junior year.
Seoul National University (SNU)
Each course in SNU counts as 3credits at BU. I took four courses (12 credits in total) at SNU, including a Korean language course that did not belong to SNU course system, but still count 3 credits at BU. Other courses I took were all English-taught class. I suggest one course in CBA (business school) called “Special Topics,” which counts as one international management course at SMG. This course is mainly designed for international students to learn more about Korean culture, and includes a field trip to the top Korean company, Samsung. There were also lots of guest speakers in this course who are all from the management level of the leading company in Korea.
Joining student clubs is the most efficient way to know more local students. It is common for Korean student to participate in the clubs they like. SNU provides a wide range of clubs include golf, horseback riding, dance, music, camping and so on. I strongly recommend you to join one if you want to know more about Korean culture. If you are interested in the student clubs, go to the SNU website to find out more about this.
International student support
There are two student associations helping international students: SNU Buddy and CBA Buddy. CBA Buddy is mainly for business school students and SNU Buddy is a general club for all exchange students. I joined both of them. You will be paired with one local buddy who can help you a lot when you are there. These two clubs provide a lot activities including city tours, travel to the cities outside Seoul, and “office pubs,” to help you learn Korean culture and meet Korean friends.
There are a lot of restaurants on campus, and you can get the location of each one on the school website.
On campus transportation
SNU has a really, really huge campus! Luckily, they have both a clockwise and counterclockwise free shuttle bus and pay bus. It is a little bit inconvenient if you want to leave campus, because the subway station is not walking distance from the campus. You need to take a bus first and then transfer to the subway to go to other places in Seoul. You will get more information when you go to the orientation.
Most international students choose to live on-campus because it is more convenient. I also recommended this. You will be assigned to the room. Usually it is a double room in the three-room suit, and includes a restroom.
Korea in general
I love Korean food so much! Mandu(만두), Bokkumbup, 닭갈비, Soft tofu stew, kimchi stew, BBQ… great food everywhere!
The public transportation system in Seoul is really complete. It is convenient to go anywhere in Korea. You can download a transportation app for your smartphone.
I really had a wonderful experience in Korea. Email me if you have more questions: Maggie.firstname.lastname@example.org. I would love to talk to you more about my experience in lovely Korea.