Carl Strand, Mechanical Engineering, Industrial and Production Management, Korea University, South Korea
My name is Carl and I did my exchange semester at Korea University in South Korea, Seoul. I chose to study in South Korea because it's a country that I have heard so many good things about. I went by myself to South Korea which really put me out of my comfort zone. I was a bit nervous but when I finally arrived too my accommodation, it felt like home straight away.
I stayed at a place two-minute walk from campus called Crimson House. It's a dorm that have rooms for around 40 exchange students with shared bathrooms and kitchen and
they have four different types of rooms (A, B, C, D). I stayed in a type A room which is the
smallest room they have but this didn't really matter for me because most of the time I stayed out and only used it for sleeping. The atmosphere at Crimson House is something special and I highly recommend staying here if you are going to study in South Korea.
I made friends the first day here which I hung out with the rest of the semester and it was sad to leave. Korea University is a very big school compared to Jönköping University. It's ranked on the 90th place in the world and hosts around 50 000 students. The facilities are top class and there are a lot of places where you can study. In Anam, which is located next to the university, there are many coffee shops where people usually study as well.
I was afraid that the workload would be worse if you compare to Jönköping University because of the high ranking Korea University has. The workload was nothing special compared to Jönköping University and I had time for other activities during my exchange semester.
As I said before, Korea University is located in Seoul which is a city full of activities and cool areas. My favourite area in Seoul is called Hongdae which is nice to just walk around. They have good shopping here during the day and a lot of good clubs during the night where all the Koreans go partying. Other places that I recommend to visit are:
• Lotte tower
• Bukchon village
• War memorial
• Bukhansan national park
In the end of September, South Korea has a holiday called Chuseok. Me and some friends
from Crimson House took the chance to travel to the east coast of South Korea to a national park called Seoraksan. We decided to pick the longest hike which would take us around 10h to walk. Inexperienced and untrained as we were, it took us around 15h instead but it was totally worth it! This is one of the best memories from South Korea, the views on those mountain tops were truly amazing. However, I recommend you to use proper hiking shoes for this hike and not Adidas Stan Smith. My mom and dad also came to visit me in November and together we went to the border of North Korea. To stand and with a binocular investigate North Korea was a surreal experience. I even saw people walking there!!
Ever since I applied for Jönköping University, I have dreamt about going on exchange studies. I have travelled before and I know that seeing new places, discovering new cultures and meeting new people are things that makes me happy and satisfied. My semester in South Korea has truly been amazing and I will bring back so many good memories. I have met new amazing friends from all over the world who I will keep for the rest of my life and I have had the opportunity to see new places and experience new cultures. I know that I have learned a lot this semester and that I have developed as a person. I have really stepped out of my comfort zone and challenged myself.
If you ever think about going on an exchange semester, just go!! This is something that you will never regret nor forget.
If you have any further questions about my exchange semester, feel free to contact me on LinkedIn or