Ateneo de Manila University
I came to Seoul South Korea with high hopes of the working in a prestigious establishment, no other than, ACOPIA. It was to my surprise that my overall experience here so far, has surpassed my expectations. I have to admit that I expected too much, but there is no doubt that my experience as an intern here in ACOPIA is beyond that. Not only do I get the chance to experience the wondrous life of living in Seoul, but I am also able to make worthwhile memories everyday.
On my first few weeks in ACOPIA, I was tasked to make a new English website to better disseminate information to our international audience. I worked with a partner, a fellow intern who had the same vision as I do – to help ACOPIA reach its maximum potential. Weeks passed and we continued to persevere to make every page of the website informative and aesthetically pleasing.
The new website (www.acopia-world.com) is definitely a product of weeks of hard work and perseverance. We aim for this website to be as informative as possible especially to foreigners. Moreover, we hope that through this new website we can reach more people internationally in order to create a global understanding of not just Korean and Japanese culture but of other cultures as well. In the end, we have high hopes that this new website will help us in bridging cultures and forming unity and understanding amidst diversity.
Being a student, currently studying International relations, culture is my passion and there definitely isn’t a better way to spend a Friday night than to experience culture first hand. My fellow intern and my friend, Dominique Deang and I also worked together to organize a meet up. A meet up is a cultural gathering open to all participants. I never thought organizing meet ups would be so fulfilling. We cooked and served “Turon”, a famous Philippine delicacy popular among the masses which is made of rice wrapper, sweet boiled bananas, and caramelized brown sugar. Dom and I were able to learn a lot from our co-interns and co-organizers. They taught us a lot of interesting things about French culture. We also talked about Korean, Japanese, and other cultures. We shared travel experiences and cultural stories. We were also able to talk about Philippine culture – sharing untold stories you would never read or hear about in blogs and travel magazines. Not to mention that the two attendees were also very kind and friendly – making that night indeed a celebration of cultures.
During the meet up, I had the opportunity to volunteer to be the server. It was indeed a very interesting experience. I really enjoyed operating the espresso machine and making drinks for the attendees. At home, I make coffee everyday and being a barista used to be my dream when I was young. Indeed, it was a very interesting experience that I am very grateful for.
Every Wednesdays, I teach a one on one English language class under ACOPIA’s multicultural classroom program. My student, is a Korean woman who grew up in Japan with intermediate English speaking skills. Every session, after giving her a brief lesson about grammar and vocabulary, we would talk about anything under the sun. This helped her practice her English conversational skills while also teaching me a thing or two about Japanese and Korean culture. As a student minoring in Japanese studies, I am very thankful for this opportunity because not only am I given the opportunity to teach, but I am also given an opportunity to learn about Japan and Japanese culture plus I’m also able to practice my Nihongo.
Overall, my experience here in ACOPIA is amazing. I am able to learn a lot from my co-interns and from everyone I have met. These past few weeks are definitely one for the books.