Ten University of Mississippi sophomores have been selected to change places with Korean university students this summer in a program sponsored by UM’s Trent Lott Leadership Institute and Study Abroad Office. The program pairs UM students with Konkuk University students for a month of experiences in Mississippi, Washington, D.C., and Seoul, South Korea. The students are given the opportunity to learn together and from each other on topics ranging from international diplomacy to pop culture.
“Because of its phenomenal economic development, South Korea has a large role in global economics and diplomacy,” said Blair McElroy, study abroad adviser. “And thanks to the Web, others are learning about Korean pop culture, such as the Korean Wave movies and Korean music. The Lott Leadership exchange program is a dynamic and fulfilling opportunity to explore South Korean culture and business with a diverse group of peers.
The selective program is open to rising sophomores of any major who display academic excellence and community leadership skills. Participants are Scarlett Andrews, a public policy and international studies major from Riddleton, Tenn.; Chelsea Caveny, a public policy leadership major from Hattiesburg; Meaghan Gandy, a public policy major from Yorktown, Va.; Robert Hamilton, a public policy and philosophy major from Lebanon, Tenn.; Matthew Henry, a public policy and international studies major, Alex McLelland, a public policy leadership major, and John Nordan III, a public policy major, all of Madison; Sarah Rogers, an undecided major from Amory; Emilia Wilson, a public policy leadership major from Gulfport; and Katherine Watson, a public policy leadership and Southern studies major from Louisville.
Watson said the exposure to a foreign country and its values will be beneficial when she begins to pursue a career.
“I will be able not only to see the sights and landmarks of Korea but also to hear the opinions and perspectives that the Korean students hold in regard to the areas that we will study,” Watson said. “It is a unique way to augment our learning in our increasingly global world.”
The exchange begins June 30, with joint meetings and discussions before the group travels in the United States for approximately two weeks prior to leaving for South Korea.