NMU Launches Initiatives in South Korea
NMU is among the first 17 U.S. universities to partner with the Teach and Learn in Korea (TaLK) program, which offers paid internships to undergraduates who teach English in rural elementary schools in South Korea. The program is sponsored by the National Institute for International Education under the direction of the South Korean Ministry of Education, Science and Technology. NMU International Programs screens and recommends candidates, then forwards their applications to the TaLK offices in Seoul. Those selected receive paid airfare, housing, health insurance and a monthly stipend. No Korean language skill is required.
“Students should work directly through our office rather than apply through the Chicago consulate because we are able to streamline the application and offer academic credit through NMU,” said Susan Morgan (International Programs). “The NIIED hopes that working with universities that have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) will result in a highly qualified pool of prospective TaLK scholars. Those admitted to the program complete a four-week orientation addressing Korean culture, education and basic teaching methods. Students from any major can apply, but it is particularly well-suited to education and English majors.”
TaLK scholars would teach English 15 hours per week with a Korean college student in after-school programs. A companion program, EPIK (English Program in Korea), is geared toward recent graduates who have completed a bachelor's degree and are willing to teach English 22 hours per week during regular school hours. Morgan said there are 7-10 NMU applicants for TaLK so far and two for EPIK. Two program coordinators visited campus Oct. 19 and gave presentations for interested students and faculty. For more information, contact
On a related note, Northern has signed an MOU with Myong Ji University in Seoul and is working on a bilateral exchange agreement with Hallym University, also in South Korea. According to Myong Ji’s website, it is one of the leading private institutions of higher learning in Korea. “Since Myong Ji first opened its doors during the formative years immediately following the national liberation of our nation from the yoke of Japanese colonial rule, it has made quantitative and qualitative strides … We have now grown to two campuses, one in downtown Seoul and the other in scenic Yongin, with six colleges entailing 34 departments and divisions, a graduate school and eight specialized postgraduate programs.”
Hallym University is the newest partner in the International Business Student Exchange Network, or IBSEN. The consortium of business schools was established more than a decade ago for the main purpose of promoting student and faculty exchanges. Students pay tuition to their home universities and can study at any of the other consortium universities. Carol Steinhaus (Business) is president of IBSEN.
“I have a PowerPoint presentation that I’m taking into NMU classes and sharing with students so they are aware of these opportunities, especially two summer school options,” said Steinhaus. “I’m going to the IBSEN fall meeting next week and our group would like to meet at Hallym University in May. I’m hoping to make arrangements for a faculty-led study abroad trip to South Korea in July 2013.”