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Two Mongolian Students in Korea

Posted January. 02, 2006 03:07,   


A Mongolian school founded for Mongolian workers in 1999 by the Seoul Migrant Mission Center is the only Mongolian school located overseas in the world. It was approved as a foreign school in February 2005 and produced its first graduates in July 2005.

The first term in a Korean school was not easy for students who had gone to the Mongolian school . They had hard time understanding what teachers were saying during the class because they spoke too fast for them, and Korean teachers’ strict instruction methods used to make them unwilling to go to school.

However, they said “I am enjoying my school life since during the recess, my classmates explained to me in detail what the teachers said during the class, and my teachers showed me a lot of attachment toward me.”

The parents of Yinghae and Hauga are foreign workers who came to Korea to achieve the “Korean Dream.” Despite going through a separation from their family, whom they left behind in Mongolia, and hard work in Korea, they didn’t give up educating their children.

Yinghae is excited about returning home to Mongolia. His mother who came to Korea seven years ago and has been doing needlework at a textile factory, has earned enough money to buy an apartment in Mongolia.

He said with a wide smile, “I cannot even go to sleep when thinking about living with my parents and my sister in an apartment in Mongolia after seven years’ separation. I would be popular among my friends in Mongolia since I learned Korean and know many things about Korean stars and sports players.”

Hauga’s New Year’s resolution is to raise his school grades. In Mongolian school, he ranked first or second place in school performance, but since he entered Korean school, his grades are low.

He said, “The level of science and English classes in Korea is too high, but I like it because I feel like I’m getting smart. Next year, I will ask my friends eagerly whenever I don’t know.”

He plans to prepare for subjects that he will learn in his senior year at middle school during his vacation.

Both Mongolian boys said that Korea is their second motherland. Their dream in the future is to have a job which could be helpful both to Korea and Mongolia.

Yinghae said, “I want to major in Korean at the National University of Mongolia and became a Korean teacher in Mongolia after graduation.”

Hauga said, “I will study hard and enter a medical school in Korea. And then I want to work for foreign workers as well as Mongolian workers.”

The hearts of the two Mongolian boys who are greeting a new year in a faraway foreign country, seemed to be overflowing with a precious present: hope.

turtle@donga.com ditto@donga.com