”To have adventure in a new place, I moved to Korea.”

We met Gwen who is famous for her SeoulBot channel on YouTube at a café in Sinchon. Her outgoing, bright and funny allure just broke the ice as soon as we met. The positive energy led our interview smoothly. she is a really pleasant girl off-screen as well.

🔺Gwen running a YouTube channel ‘SeoulBot’.


Gwen, please introduce yourself briefly.

“Hi, I am 21 and a university student who loves drinking coffee like other students. I went to Seoul, Korea from California, America because I had wanted to go to the Ewha University. I like spending time doing this and that on the Internet. As some of you may know, I have a channel called ‘SeoulBot’ on YouTube. During my vacation, I am trying to pack more into my day. For example, I visit unique cafes or cute accessories shops and do several outside activities.”


What is your first impression about Korea?

“I remember that Korean people who I met on my first day in Korea are extremely kind and helpful. At that time, me and my dad had a lot of luggage and got a little bit lost in the subway station and people came to us and tried to carry our stuff together.

And another big impression was that public transportation is very convenient and fast. You can find a taxi or any kind of public transportation everywhere and you just get to your destination soon. I like that.”


At age 18, what was your dream when you decided to go to Korea?

“To be honest, my goal was just to be a student at Ewha University, no more, no less. I did not have a fantasy about K-POP, Korean idols, and the party nights in Hongik University Street unlike others. I believe I was a quite practical person and wanted a new venture.”


You started to live abroad at quite young age. What was the reaction of people around you when you said you are going to Korea?

“Actually, they were not that happy for my decision. Especially, my parents were worried a lot. You know, Korea is in a truce not a peace treaty. So technically Korea is still at war. Also, they did not know much about the North Korean situation or the relationship between the two Koreas. Moreover, it is not difficult to come across a lot of dangerous assaults at news because of the ready availability of guns in the US.

On the day that I left, they seemed to feel sad than worried. My grandfather asked me when I am going to be back like, if I would come back to America after graduation. And he always wants me to stay in the US in every vacation. I feel sad whenever I see him too. But now, all my family members love that I am living in Korea because they know this country is quite safe.”

🔺Gwen is listening to the interview questions.


You have a YouTube channel in Korea. What was it that first moved you to run a YouTube channel?

“Actually, I already had had my channel before I went to Korea. I just filmed whenever I have some time in my room back then. After coming Korea, I wanted to help other foreigners who want to go to Korean Universities but do not have enough information about the enrollment system. The information about the Ewha University was definitely not enough four years ago. And then, I just posted my new everyday life in Korea such as what I am doing in the Ewha University, my travel story, and the get ready with me videos. My channel becomes more meaningful to me now.”


I think many people can relate to your videos because it is casual and personal. Is there any Korean culture you want to bring with you to America and vice versa?

“I want to take the Korean Convenience Culture. For example, you can buy everything with just a few clicks of the mouse and it will be delivered to you in a few days. You might have to wait for a month to get it in the US. Also I like Korea’s well developed public transportation. There was only one bus line in my area when I lived in California. So you have to drive yourself or take a taxi unless you are able to use the only one bus. But I have tons of buses in my neighborhood now! I want America’s public transport system to be improved.

Another one is the Trust Culture. You can easily find a shop displaying their items on the street. But they are not stolen. And at a café, you do not have to be worried about your wallet or bag on the table when you leave to get your coffee. It is impossible in the US.”


There is a cultural difference. Then, is there any similarity between Americans and Koreans?

“The life of students is quite similar between the two. I thought Korean students must study hard like they always concentrate on the class and be obsessed with getting the best grade. But the students I see in my class are on Facebook, doze off and even go to school in his or her majamas. I realized that students are all about and about. It makes me feel closer to them for some reason.”


🔺Gwen is smiling at the camera.


You have a YouTube channel in Korea. What was it that first moved you to run a YouTube channel?

Actually, I already had had my channel before I went to Korea. I just filmed whenever I have some time in my room back then. After coming Korea, I wanted to help other foreigners who want to go to universities in Korea but do not have enough information about the enrollment system. The information about the Ewha University was definitely not enough four years ago. And then, I just posted my new everyday life in Korea such as what I am doing in the Ewha University, my travel story, and the get ready with me videos. My channel becomes more meaningful to me now.

I think many people can relate to your videos because it is casual and personal. Is there any Korean culture you want to bring with you to America and vice versa?

I want to take the Korean Convenience Culture. For example, you can buy everything with just a few clicks of the mouse and it will be delivered to you in a few days. You might have to wait for a month to get it in the US. Also I like Korea’s well developed public transportation. There was only one bus line in my area when I lived in California. So you have to drive yourself or take a taxi unless you are able to use the only one bus. But I have tons of buses in my neighborhood now! I want America’s public transport system to be improved.

Another one is the Trust Culture. You can easily find a shop displaying their items on the street. But they are not stolen. And at a café, you do not have to be worried about your wallet or bag on the table when you leave to get your coffee. It is impossible in the US.

There is a cultural difference. Then, is there any similarity between Americans and Koreans?

The life of students is quite similar between the two. I thought Korean students must study hard like they always concentrate on the class and be obsessed with getting the best grade. But the students I see in my class are on Facebook, doze off and even go to school in his or her majamas. I realized that students are all about and about. It makes me feel closer to them for some reason.


🔺Gwen is looking at the Joinus World website.


We explained to her the reason she decided to upload videos to give foreigners some information about Korea is almost the same with JoinusKorea’s goal. She was interested in it so we showed our website. After taking a look around our website, she said it has a lot of useful and helpful advice but needs to be improved on its design.

Thanks for your interest about our activities. What do you think about the website, JoinusWorld?

It is definitely helpful. It is a shame that I was not aware of it. But the design needs to be reformed. The foreign users might have been hard to make out the letters because they are tiny and there is too much information in one page. It would be a lot better if they simplify it. I am sure that many foreigners all over the world need this information.


🔺Gwen posed as a member of the Joinus Korea group.


What is the goal you want to achieve before you leave Korea for home?

I have a lot but I would say being happy and feeling good about myself. What good is it achieving all of them if I am not happy? That’s enough if I content with my life and the memories in Korea.


 




"다국어&다문화 지식공유/교류 커뮤니티" 운영 IT NGO

MULTILINGUAL KNOWLEDGE EXCHANGE & SHARING COMMUNITY


 JOINUSWORLD.ORG 



조인어스코리아는 국내 최대 29개 ‘국경 없는 언어문화 지식교류활동가’(JOKOER)를 회원으로 하는 NGO로써,
지식을 통해 세계인과 교류하는 다국어&다문화 지식허브 커뮤니티를 운영하는 순수 비영리 민간외교 단체 입니다.



Posted by 다국어 지식나눔 NGO 조인어스코리아

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