The International Relations Team (IRT) has just finished recruiting their new batch of student volunteers for the 2014 Global Outreach Program. The program aims to encourage students to become not only talented scientists and engineers, but also responsible citizens who can help make the world a better place through personal acts of kindness and the spreading of understanding between people and cu
On May 9, KAIST International House hosted Korean Day, the first day of the annual Korean Day and Night, to give international students an interactive experience to familiarize themselves with several features and aspects of Korean culture and history. The event was available to a limited number of registrants, who took part in several interactive activities, including crafting paper lanterns, making rolls of gimbap (Korean seaweed-wrapped rice rolls), and singing and dancing to pansori (Korean genre of musical storytelling).
Every passing semester has seen increasing internationalization of our campus, and it requires a lot of steps to be taken to see that the interests of international students are met. A huge part of this is helping international students to adapt to Korean life and culture. KAIplus is a nonprofit voluntary organization in KAIST contributing to this very purpose. The KAIST Herald met with the president of KAIplus, Doctor Young Hee Lee, to discuss the organization’s objectives and future plans.
Throughout my high school years, I took pride in being the top of the class. My academic achievements were my sole identity, fueling the competitive drive that has long existed within me. While the aspiration to become “the best” benefited me in many aspects, it also shaped my personality in unwanted ways as I entered college.
Relationships are complicated, and each culture has its own way of going about it. After my near lifelong residence outside Korea, I did not have a great understanding of the characteristics of dating in Korea. All I had to go on were the rare Korean dramas that I had glimpses of online. After my return, and after getting to see Koreans in relationships around me, I made some interesting, even surprising, observations. Most foreign students may not have the same sort of understanding; however, they may have noticed some of these “nuances,” and may very well be nodding with something in mind.
About this time of the year, one can hear some people jokingly comment that springtime has come for couples. Some others take it further to tease that the sole purpose of the Spring Festival (though cancelled this year) is to let people have fun with their significant other, while singles (more commonly referred to as “solos”) have nothing better to do than, say, finishing assignments. “Single-since-birth” (or more popularly termed as motae-solo) has almost become a derogatory term in a college community where dating is more of a luxury than not. In effect, some of those who are not in a relationship at the moment - let alone the motae-solos - naturally look up to those that are dating, whether on campus or across some distance. Even mobile apps for lovers have established a sense of prerogative that imposes some feeling of loss for singles.
With the widespread popularity of smartphones among the young, it was inevitable that smartphone applications (apps) for young couples would become a new trend. Despite the limited market size, here are several apps that have vied to win over tech-savvy couples who would like to take their relationship to their phones.
Getting good grades, participating in exciting club activities, and having a romantic relationship are three elements that many students seek for in their college experience. Indeed, each student has different priorities and expects different things from college, and the three do not have to be all present to have a happy, satisfying college life. For instance, some consider love a luxury or a waste of time, money, and emotions. Nevertheless, love, the most craved human desire, continues to excite, stimulate, and arouse our feelings. Couples at KAIST are largely divided into two classes: long-distance couples and campus couples. Advantages and disadvantages of each relationship have been examined.
The life of a student pursuing his undergraduate degree at KAIST is quite packed with classes that somehow initiate more of theoretical learning than a practical one. Many of the major courses are quite rigorous and focus on making students learn as much as possible from the textbook. Should I call it our ignorance or a “don’t care” attitude that we have not been able to realize how this system has restricted our approach and thinking?
There is no lack of social media sites nowadays, but none of these is workplace- or university- friendly, as they are only meant for our personal social lives. This is where Yammer comes in. Yammer is Microsoft’s social site that focuses on workplaces and universities to get information efficiently sent to the right people. Introducing this site to KAIST is Jungil Lee, the new manager for the International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS). The KAIST Herald interviewed him to discuss his reasons and goals with the site.
On April 8, the International Kitchen (W6) was finally reopened after an 11-day temporary closure for reconstruction. Much as the majority of students have anticipated, the kitchen was thoroughly refurbished, with all obsolete appliances such as stoves, sinks, and cabinets replaced with new and modern ones. Rice cookers and microwaves previously broken or badly damaged have also been displaced. Wooden lockers in the dining room have been upgraded, allowing more space for storage and more shelves to accommodate allocation among users of the same locker. In addition, disinfectants were sprayed to ensure that the kitchen would be in its cleanest and healthiest condition upon reopening.
Knowing the meanings of flowers may be a fun – even trivial – thing to do. Contemplating on the yearly flower blooms and turning your head upside down to make it a “once-a-year-only” phenomenon adds gratitude to the college life. Updating the playlists on your music player with music that suits the season and the ambience may be one way to give daily routines a pinch of freshness. But why stop there?
While spring, for its lively and amiable nature, may be the season that goes well with any kind of music, note that hitting the right notes can make your spring a more memorable one. Yes, it is just another spring, but that is just the reason to single it out and make it that one “other” spring. So, here is a short list of suggestions on what to listen to.
The warm rays of sunlight and the cool breeze hails the start of spring. The flowers are in their full bloom, decorating the campus roads with colorful pedals and their faint aroma. It is a great time to take a break and enjoy a relaxing walk around campus, or a barrage of selfies with flowery backgrounds. The flowers are definitely great to look at, but ever wonder about the flower meaning of the flowers we see around campus? For those who are unfamiliar with the concept of flower meanings, many cultures assign different meanings and symbolisms to each type of flower – like how roses are associated with love and passion. Perhaps, some of the flowers and their meanings may inspire you to have a moment of introspection, or perhaps they may just supply you with interesting factoids.
At KAIST, the beginning of the spring season is marked by the gorgeous image of cherry blossoms at full bloom. The peak of the blooming cherry blossoms coincides with the annual strawberry parties, which many students look forward to. At this time, departments, student clubs, lab groups, high school classmates, freshmen orientation groups, or even just a small group of your closest friends gather outside to eat strawberries. The campus is filled with both students and outside visitors appreciating the warm weather and the beautiful scenery. It is KAIST’s peak season for visitors and one of the rare occasions when you will see students sitting outside and enjoying the fresh air.
The advancement of technology is truly remarkable. If you were to take a moment and imagine a world without the different kinds of technology we have today, as much of us probably do once in a while, you would wonder how anybody could go through the day. It could be anything: electricity, the Internet, gas engines, Velcro, and on goes the list. It would be a hard case to make against the use and importance of technology and their constant development, since so much of our lives are enhanced, made convenient, and sometimes even made safer through the use of technology. In fact, it probably does more good than harm in most cases. However, even if the use of technology may look harmless or even beneficial, it is always important to debate the hidden ethical ramifications of such use.
Here, a selection of misconceptions on science and technology that have been concluded due to a lack of communication between esoteric frontline scientists and researchers and laid back lay public. As KAISTians, the cases put forward may seem obviously wrong, but keep in mind that these marked a change, albeit small, in the course of economics, health education, food culture, advertising, and so on. One could think that everybody already knew about these, but apparently not. So, ask the deeper question: why all these misconceptions?Does Cell Phone Use Cause Brain Cancer?
Sometimes, it is easy to let ethical dilemmas in science overshadow the overall benefit of that same technology to society. When technological development accelerates at a rate that society cannot keep up with, there are no proper regulatory measures and periodically, society may misuse it. Notable destructive applications of technology are in weaponry and warfare, such as the atomic bombs used in Nagasaki and Hiroshima. But the same scientific developments that were used to develop the atomic bombs have also contributed to the implementation of nuclear power plants and medical technology like chemotherapy. Although some are inclined to consider technology a curse by citing its negative impacts, technology has contributed positively to society’s development in countless ways.
The last two letters of our school stand for science and technology, so to say that we not only meet it but also live it is a more accurate description of a typical KAISTian. Indeed, the name KAIST gives many outsiders (that my acquaintances and I have personally come across) the impression that it is densely populated with intellectually gifted people staying up late at night at their labs or offices. How many of the vast majority that we call “the public” are capable of communicating with scientists and engineers? But thinking the other way around, how much of the complex society can we precisely describe with scientific knowledge alone? How many of its demanding problems can be addressed with technological progress only? How many scientists find themselves misunderstood, disregarded, or even unnoticed?
A walk to the library, gallery, or cinema from time to time surely would not hurt at all. However, given the extraordinary setting at KAIST where the vast majority of students reside in dormitories, it makes sense to try indulging in the arts and culture - right at your dorm.