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Another POSTECH In Hong Kong
[393호] 2018년 02월 09일 (금) Lee Mi-yeon, Lee Jun-yong mylee0031@, junyonglee98@
Located on the beautiful shoreline of eastern Hong Kong, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) was established in 1991. Similar to POSTECH, the university is rather small and research-oriented. A notable aspect of HKUST is that it is possible to graduate with a degree unrelated to science or engineering. Students can enroll in business and management or humanities and social sciences, unlike the two-track road at POSTECH.
At HKUST, reporters of The Postech Times interviewed Kim Dong-bum, the president of the Korean Students’ Association (KSA) of HKUST.

What inspired you to go to HKUST?
I graduated from middle school and high school in China unlike other Korean students in HKUST. I was prepared for university while attending an international school and was influenced by a senior who entered HKUST. At first, I was preparing for university in Korea. However, through discussions with seniors who went to HKUST, it is considered an international university, and provides a chance to consider various major fields of study while providing a wide variety of opportunities to contact with foreign students. Additionally, the fact that I can study Chinese and English together also affected my choice. Now, I am majoring in business management. I think, or more specifically, I would major in management, marketing, and information and communication.

What do you think is the unique characteristic of HKUST?
As you may have felt when you came, the school is located in a quiet place and the beach is in front of the house. The scenery is very beautiful. The location of the school seems to be both an advantage and a disadvantage in a way. Since there are many facilities around the school, I can concentrate only on studies in school. Also, there are many Chinese students at school. Most of them study well on the mainland in China, so I could learn many positive things from them.
However, lack of school facilities can often be a disadvantage. Although a Starbucks was constructed in 2015, as time goes by, I seem to hope for more.

What is the KSA in HKUST doing?
Our association was founded seven years ago. There were about 60-70 students in HKUST in 2012, but now there are more than 300 students who attend HKUST. As there are many Korean students, I feel responsible for them. We are doing our best to make their life more comfortable on campus and outside the school. In particular, we are trying to provide benefits through exchanges with the Korean Students’ Union in Hong Kong. In addition, we interact with the student union on campus and the international student association, which hold events together, and have an exchange event with students from different nationalities. We also provide a job information platform from Korean and Hong Kong companies.

Is the class held in English?
Like many other schools, the classes are taught in English. However, the mathematics tutorial class that the A runs is sometimes held in Cantonese. Korean students have no problem taking classes because they have a credit from the English certification test when they enter the school.

What do students usually do on vacation?
In Hong Kong, the fall semester, which is regarded as the first semester begins in September and the vacation period is from December to January. During vacations, most students usually take internships or participate in research projects and take seasonal classes.

What kind of paths do Korean students take after graduation?
By business school standards, Korea students often work in the finance industry due to its active financial economy. About 60 percent of the students work in Hong Kong and there are also students who work for conglomerates in Korea. The engineering school is increasing and is eager to apply for a combined master’s and doctorate program.

Despite the difference of cities, the students of HKUST and POSTECH were living a similar life. Secluded from an urban area, both research-oriented universities provide a quiet and unstimulating atmosphere for scholars. However, unlike POSTECH, which mainly consists of Koreans, HKUST’s multicultural environment gives the school some unique characteristics. It was a memorable experience, being able to see and talk with peers living in different environments.
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