Jenny Kang, Class of ’12

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Jenny Kang, class of 2012, decided to study Psychology at the European branch of Saint Louis University in Missouri after spending six months working full-time.

1.Why did you choose to study in Spain?

I’ve wanted to live in Europe and completely immerse myself in a foreign culture. I found out about my university by searching for accredited universities in Europe that not only taught bilingually, but also had degree programs that would be recognized globally.

2.What are some hardships you have experienced in Spain?

The people there are selective, so in the beginning, it was difficult to break into existing cliques. Like the natives of many other cultures, Spanish people tend to exclude non-native speakers who are not fluent in Spanish.

3.What are some cultural differences between Korea, the US and Spain?

I was shocked by the liberal dispositions of Spanish people concerning issues such as LGBT rights. But at the same time, I was surprised to see that they were not as welcoming to foreigners who had not adjusted to Spanish culture. While I expected European culture to be free of prejudice, Spain was not very different from Korea, when it came to narrow-mindedness regarding foreigners.

4.What are your extracurricular activities?

I host Korean cultural activities to familiarize my Spanish friends with Korean traditions. Recently, I learned American Sign Language to help my volunteering at T-Oigo, which means “I hear you” in Spanish. As a part of this group, I teach English through sign language to deaf children in Madrid.

5. What is your career goal?

First, I want to master the Spanish language and finish my undergraduate degree in Spain. Later, I plan to get a PhD in clinical psychology to pursue a life-long career as a psychologist.

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