Through my eyes as a Thai student in a foreign land
Everyone has his/her own dreams, but the challenging is how to make dreams come true.
When I was a little girl, I also had a dream to adventure and study abroad at least once in life time. I searched information through television, international exhibitions, language institutes, agencies, and internet. At that time, I had known Pantip Klaibaan as a quality room for sharing experiences and providing assistances among Thai people living abroad.
My motivation to go abroad was inspired by reading other peoples experiences. I also perceived the online friendship via this cyber space. Nowadays, my dreams come true. I am living abroad as a Graduate Student. Then, I would like to share my special discovery since I have come to this foreign land, Korea.
Previously, I tried to study hard to obtain the good scores. I prepared myself to reach the goal by raising GPA and English skill. I knew that most of the renowned universities and institutes confirmed to credit high GPA and high TOEFL or IELTS scores. However, I still furthered my study to obtain Master Degree in Thailand because I had received financial support overthere. During my Post-Graduation in Master Level, I paid attention to both courseworks and thesis. I also informed my advisor that I have had a dream to study abroad. Fortunately, there was a full scholarship offered for Doctoral Study in Korea.
I heard that Korean Government focused on science and technology to develop the country, so they provided many scholarships without any conditions for research students. I decided to walk this way after considering reasonable holistically. Thereby, one year later, two juniors were followed my steps. That was my pleasure not only being a pacesetter but also a connection maker . It would imply that connections between instructors and institute could be quite important for acquiring study recommendation.
Initially, I could not imagine how I should prepare myself. I had never learned basic Korean language. I bought many winter clothes from Thailand. Besides, I neglected to check up my body. Therefore, I would like to guide some practical tips for the beginners about preparing in terms of acclimatization, clothing, language, plus defined knowledge and skills.
Checking up body before going abroad is recommended. For acclimatization, healthy and fit body is advantage. On the other hand, poor health condition is easy to suffer from illness. Generally, local clothes are more fashionable and cheaper than garment from Thailand. National language should be learned for daily-use conversations. The specific knowledge and skills could be used as the weapons in warriors hands. These are guided-summary through my experiences.
Practically, I started living in Korea with teardrops-session. I have learned to face several tough experiences. Survival was fulfilled with several feelings like a taste of Tom Yum Kung. There were spicy, bitter, sour, and sweet to making life tasty. Versatile strategies were applied to deal with problems. I found that significant characteristics made a happy living composed of optimist, flexibility, enthusiasm, endurance and modesty. Several approach were fitted with different situations. For instance, friendliness and modesty were important to make first impression. Enthusiasm and helpfulness were necessary to win professors and colleagues' hearts. Likewise, I learned about open-mind from different cultures. Anyhow, every characteristic must be frankly performed.
Moreover, I have got the great experience in living, depending on myself because I am only one graduate student supervised by my professor. So I must spend almost every day alone. I used to complain my fate and prayed to reach some colleagues. It was such a tough period for me to stand alone. However, I sometimes heard about some conflicts occurred in other offices, which have many students. Although I understood that conflicts between colleagues in working place was an usual aspect that could regularly happen but I felt my situation was not much better. All sufferings were made by my thoughts. Afterwards, I tried to accept and understand my condition. I, myself turned my concentration on improvements by means of cooking, reading, writing, working, singing, exercise and meditation. I continued my practice on spending every moment consciously. Then I found that I could fulfill my desire by creating happiness on my own way. I am able to stay alone comfortably and proudly from now on.
Meanwhile, for social interaction with professor and colleagues, I have been taught that professor should be an adorable person whom students have to respect and obey. Otherwise, I might not achieve my degree regularly. In case of friendship, I always keep distance with everyone because too close relationships would easily make inconveniences. I have a few friends but all of them are nice fellows coming from both my motherland and foreign lands. Luckily, I was not discriminated or contemned from my colleagues so I re-treated all my friends equally. Casually, I improved my English skill by working and making friendship as well. Especially my close Korean friend, she made me interesting in studying Korean culture and language by communicating with her in Korean.
Finally, I consider about Korean language, culture, development, and civilization. The alphabets in Korean language are called Hangul. Korean letters seem to look clearly and can be read easily. However, I proved that successful language studying required high spirit and took a long time to virtually understand including vocabulary-memorizing.
The Korean food is distinguished in variety of side dishes. However the taste of food is not sharp like Thai food. Most of Korean people can not speak English. The basic noticeable characteristics of Korean people and community system consist of diligence, disciplinary, seniority, and impatience. Nevertheless, some Korean people are warm but some are aggressive. However, this strong community has been indoctrinated by nationalism. I observe that Korea is a resilience country incredibly raised from loser of historical wars.
The economics was fast improved after Second World War. Almost industrial and consumers goods were produced by Korean companies and suppliers. For example, the general brand names of vehicle are Hyundai, KIA, Daewoo, and SSang Yong. The electrical devices and appliances have been mainly produced by Samsung and LG companies. Mobile phones have been developed by Anycall, CYON, Samsung, and LG. These are all Korean leader trademarks. Besides, I have seen some imitated goods produced by Korean suppliers to reduce cost from import original products such as specific instruments, glassware and chemicals including software. Therefore, cash flow is seldom leaked away to other countries. Additionally, their successful in entertainment promotion known as Korean series and K-pop fever particularly in Southeast Asian countries are formulated even it sounds different from true story. The selling points of Korean multimedia are actors, actresses, idols, nice scenes and locations. These are involved in raising income from direct entertainment business and indirect plastic surgery operation and tourism. Many attractive locations are simple but distinguish in different seasons. Similarly, Thailand has many beautiful attractions. Thai alphabets are unique. Thai food is very delicious. Thai people are nice, friendly, and smart. Therefore, if Thai people are proud to be Thai and support Made in Thailand products, our country can be developed rapidly as well.
Consequently, every country has their own characteristics. Acceptance and respect each other would be preferred. From my point of view, I would like to emphasize that my experiences in overseas education have brought me tough enough to be a qualified and matured person. Eventually, I would like to inspire all thai students who are studying abroad that if we try our best attempt , certainly success will be ours.
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