It is hard to believe TEN YEARS AGO we were finishing up our grant year in South Korea! What an incredible, life-changing year it was. We were lucky enough to be placed near the town of Hong-seong in Chung Nam Province. Our time in South Korea taught us such a valuable global perspective and allowed us to be deeply immersed in the communities and schools where we lived and taught that year. All three of us built strong relationships with our host families and colleagues in such a deep way that we are still in contact today. We were blown away by the hospitality that was graciously offered throughout our time in Korea. Whether it was hiking Hallasan in the snow during our Fulbright Reunion in Jeju, learning how to make Kimbap with our host-moms, or celebrating Buddha’s birthday in a temple in Seoul, we made the most of our time in Korea.
Professionally, we learned so much as teachers that year and were deeply impressed by the respect for education and dedication to learning that we observed. Since returning to the US, we’ve all pursued career paths in education and continue to share our love for Korean culture with our American students. Between the three of us, we’ve started after-school Korean clubs at our schools, taught friends and family how to cook Korean dishes, and advised and interviewed new Fulbright grantees. We’re grateful for the ways you continued to support us even after our Fulbright grant was over by writing letters of recommendation as we applied to graduate school and education jobs.
We cannot thank you enough for all that you have done for the Korea Fulbright program and the many grantees’ lives you have touched over the years. We hope you know what a deep impact you have made on all those who have been a part of the Korea Fulbright program. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you, Director Shim. Best of luck in retirement! We are eternally grateful!
Laura Tschop Hobbins, Emily Durham Diy, and Rosie Moran Carey