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The historical clubs of Inha University : With interviews with Azit, Taekwondo club, and Byuljigi

기사승인 2024.05.30  23:27:19

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  Inha University is celebrating its 70th anniversary in 2024. Inha University is a private comprehensive university located in Michuhol-gu, Incheon, South Korea, and was founded in February 1954. Over the course of its 70th anniversary, Inha University has produced many outstanding students for society. While education has been a big part of what makes Inha students great, In this paper, we'd like to introduce you to some of our unsung heroes outside of the classroom. These are our clubs. Inha University is home to many historic clubs that have been around since the '90s, '80s, and even before. As Inha Times is Inha University's only English-language student newspaper, we wanted to celebrate our 70th anniversary by covering the activities of Inha University's clubs for our main audience, international students. In this article, we interviewed three central clubs and international students who are active in the clubs to find out more about their club life.

▲ Source: Inha University Club Association Club Introduction Book

 

 

About Inha University Central Club

  There are many different clubs at Inha University. There are central clubs registered with the Clubs and Societies Association, academic societies run by departments, and clubs that are not central clubs but are organized by students themselves. Of these, Inha University currently has more than 100 central clubs, and the total number of club members is about 5,500, one of the largest in the country. The central clubs are divided into 10 clubs according to the nature of their activities: performing arts, ball games, leisure, martial arts, service, social sciences, language, research, exhibition arts, and religion. Clubs belonging to these 10 clubs are able to carry the name of Inha University, conduct activities both on and off campus, and enjoy various benefits such as the use of individual club rooms. The easiest way to get an overview of Inha University's clubs is to check out the Club Directory, which is published by the Clubs Association in the first semester of each year. It is usually distributed in the form of a booklet by the department for new students, and you can see PDF files of each year's handbook by searching '(Inha University Club Introduction Handbook)' in the announcements on the Inha University International Center website.

  In this article, we present interviews with three of the approximately 120 central clubs. These are clubs that were founded before 2000, are still popular today, and have no restrictions on foreign members. Through interviews with the presidents of these clubs and international students, we'll learn more about the history of these clubs and what it's like to be a student at Inha University.

 

 

Azit

  One of the most well-known clubs in Inha University is Azit, a language club that brings together students from different countries who have studied abroad with Korean students at Inha University. To find out more about Azit, we interviewed Yoonseo Park, English Education major who is currently the club's president.

 

Q. Please introduce yourself.

A. I'm Yoonseo Park from the Department of English Education. I am the president of the club now and have been on the executive board for three years.

 

Q. Please tell us about Azit.

A. Azit is an international exchange club between foreign exchange students of Inha University and Korean students of Inha University to share and communicate with each other's culture. It was revised from the former IAESTE to Azit as of January 18, 2020, and its founding year is 1969, making it 56 years old this year. What makes our club unique is that we do all of our activities with foreign students. (We say foreign members because it is open to international students as well as exchange students).

 

Q. What activities are held at the Azit?

A. The main activities that are regularly organized are the weekend event and minimate, as well as the farewell party. Weekend event is an activity where we organize team cultural trips around Seoul, Incheon, and schools every weekend. Minimate is a weekday evening meetup activity that allows members to connect with each other, usually over dinner at the tailgate. Regular meetings and after-parties are held every other Wednesday, with an introduction to the club and an announcement of the schedule, followed by an after-party to socialize. The Farewell party is a final farewell to the exchange students who are returning home. The farewell party is a great way to make lasting memories with the people you've gotten to know over the semester. Other events include the Halloween party, which is only held in the second semester, and various other events throughout the semester.

 

Q. What is the status of foreign students joining Azit?

A. Azit is a club with foreign club members and is open to all Inha University students, exchange students, and international students. We have a recruitment period one week before the start of each semester. This semester, there are about 100 foreign exchange students, and about this many people join every semester. To make it easy to join regardless of nationality, we have created promotional materials for both Korean members and foreign exchange students and distributed them on Everytime(app), Instagram, and exchange student chat rooms during the promotion period. The way to apply is to fill out the Google form referenced in the flyer and once the payment of the membership fee is confirmed, you will be invited to the chat room.

 

Q. Do you have a favorite fun or special event that happened at your club?

A. I would like to talk about Halloween. Every Halloween we have a costume contest where everyone dresses up. It started out as a simple costume contest, but every year the quality of the costumes got better and better, and it became something special to see in the our club every Halloween.

 

Q. Thank you for this interview, do you have any closing thoughts?

A. I would like to say a final word about joining the club. Please keep in mind that we have a limited number of spots available, as if too many people apply, we may not be able to accommodate them! We are always disappointed to see so many students disappointed when the program closes quickly. We'll do our best to make sure that as many students as possible are able to participate in the program!

 

▲Source: Inha University's Azit Instagram (@azit_inha)

▲Source: Inha University's Azit Instagram (@azit_inha)

 

 

Taekwondo Club

  There is unique category of clubs at Inha University. It is the 'martial arts' category. In particular, Inha University has a martial arts club with a special tradition, the Taekwondo Club, which celebrated its 50th anniversary this year. In this paragraph, we will introduce an interview with Han Sang-hoon, the head of the Taekwondo Club.

 

Q. Please introduce yourself.

A. Hello, I'm Han Sang-hoon, the head of the Taekwondo Club, a martial arts club at Inha University.

 

Q. Please introduce yourself to the Taekwondo Club.

A. We are a club that focuses on demonstrations and competitions in Taekwondo! We were founded on April 4, 1974, making it 50 years since our founding.

 

Q. What activities does the taekwondo club do?

A. Our taekwondo club has many activities throughout the year, including winter training, festival performance demonstrations, summer training, and the National Club Taekwondo Competition. Especially in the National Club Taekwondo Competition, we are proud to have won the overall men's championship in 2021, the overall 4th place for men and women in 2022, and the overall runner-up for women in 2023. We also train together in physical fitness exercises (diet), Poomsae, competitions, and technical kicking. This consistent year-round activity creates a strong sense of belonging and allows us to work on fitness together, which is not always easy to manage in college.

 

Q. What is the current status of foreign students' membership?

A. We accept foreign students as long as they can communicate in Korean. This is because our club has a lot of activities and demonstrations to show to the outside world, so it can be difficult to communicate with each other. If you can communicate in Korean, you can participate in activities such as participating in the national club taekwondo competition. Actually, until the first semester of last year, we had six foreign members, but three of them were exchange students, so they only did one semester and went back, and two of them graduated. So now we only have one foreign member from Mongolia. The way we promote joining the club is advertisement posted on the community app 'Every Time'. We don't have an English version of the post. As I mentioned earlier, we are recruiting foreign members who can communicate in Korean, so we don't see the need for it.

 

Q. Do you have a favorite or funniest story from your time in Taekwondo?

A. I don't want to talk about the funniest episode in the club, but rather an event that we go through every year. It's competing in the national club taekwondo tournament. During the competition, my teammates and I worked towards one goal: to win the national championship. When I competed, even if I lost a match, I would support the other members in the remaining matches to the best of my ability, and I would celebrate with them when they won a medal. Throughout the whole process, I was so happy to feel united with my teammates!

 

Q. Thank you for agreeing to this interview. Do you have any final thoughts?

A. I wish Inha University Taekwondo Club the best of luck!

 

▲Source: Inha University's Taekwondo club Instagram(@inha_tkd)

▲Source: Inha University's Taekwondo club Instagram(@inha_tkd)

 

 

Byuljigi (or IAAA: Inha Amateur Astronomical Association)

  Inha University's research clubs are spaces where students can conduct research and exploration activities that are difficult to do as individuals. Among them, Inha University has an amateur astronomical observation club, 'Byuljigi', which is famous for its unique activity of astronomical observation. In this article, we would like to introduce an interview with Na Gun-woo, a third-year aerospace engineering student who is the president of Byuljigi.

 

Q. Please introduce yourself.

A. Hello, I'm Na Gunwoo, a 22nd year student of Aerospace Engineering, who is serving as the President of the Byuljigi.

 

Q. Please introduce yourself to the Byuljigi.

A. We are an amateur astronomy club that is a group of people who love to observe the stars. It was founded in 1994 and is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year!

 

Q. What activities do you do in the Byuljigi?

A. Our club's special activity is observing. Depending on the situation, we organize public observations, suburb observations, small observations, and school observations. Public observations are usually held once a semester and are held on campus with multiple telescopes. Everyone can drop by and observe, including club members, and participate in small events such as astronomy quizzes. suburb observations, small observations are activities where the club members go outside to observe astronomical objects. School observing is an activity that is held from time to time at school when the weather is favorable.

 

Q. What is the current status of club membership for foreign students, including exchange students?

A. Byuljigi is accepting foreign club members! (No restrictions on joining) We had a few foreign members during the pandemic, but since then, we have not had any foreign members now. When we are recruiting new members, we advertise on the community app Everytime, on our official Instagram @iaaa_inha, and on bulletin boards around campus with posters with instructions on how to join, including a Google Form QR code. We accept applications through Google Form, and The club executives read all applications to select new members.

 

Q. Are there any fun or memorable activities you did at Byuljigi?

A. Every April, we invite our graduating seniors back to the school for an event called Foundation Day. There's something that's unique to this event, and that's bowing to the telescopes and making wish. We all bow to the telescope and pray for good weather and no rain when we are observing. I don’t know it’s really because of this, Thankfully, the last two semesters, we've had great weather on our regular observing days, and we've been able to see the stars without any problems. So, this Foundation Day is a fun and meaningful memory for me.

 

Q. Thank you for this interview, do you have any closing remarks?

A. We hope you'll stay tuned to Byuljigi, a group of romantic amateur astronomers!

 

▲Source: Inha University's Byuljigi Instagram(@iaaa_inha)
▲Source: Inha University's Byuljigi Instagram(@iaaa_inha)

 

 

Interview with foreign students

  In addition to the above interviews with the president of the Azit, we also interviewed Lucie and Alexis, two exchange students who are active in the Azit, to hear more about their experiences in Inha University club. In the following paragraphs, we will introduce their interviews about their experiences as exchange students and their experiences with clubs at Inha University, including the process of joining clubs and so on.

 

Q. Please introduce yourself.

A1. I am Lucie, a 3rd year french student. (Hereinafter, L.)

A2. Hi i’m Alexis from france i’m 22 years old and my major is business administration. (Hereinafter, A.)

 

Q. How did the two of you find out about the information of clubs?

L : I met club members through parties and in general through ISN(Inha University's International Student Assistance Program)

A : Mostly on instagram.

 

Q. What are your criteria for choosing a club?

L : I considered the time it would take me, because I also have to study and visit on my own, and I considered if it would cost me a lot.

A : I absolutely wanted to join a sport club like judo.

 

Q. Did you face any challenges when joining the club, and if so, what were they?

L : The clubs were only explained in Korean so it wasn’t clear when the recruitments were and if we could join.

A : Not enought people speak English. it can be sometime hard to get infos.

 

Q. What do you think are the benefits of club activities in Inha Univ?

L : The people are very welcoming and try to mix people as much as possible.

A : The activities that are organise and the fact that we can meet Korean people.

 

Q. Do you have a memorable or funny story from your time in the club?

L : I really enjoyed the Baseball match ! Also the parties are funny, we meet a lot of people

A : I really enjoy the late party !

 

Q. What advice would you give to international students (non-Koreans) who are choosing a club?

L : I think just go with the flow and choose something you want to try since we are only here for a semester or so.

A : To be open to anything and to be connected on instagram for the news.

 

 

  Through this interview, we learned about the different activities of the clubs that we don't normally encounter. As the largest clubs in Korea, Inha University's clubs have been able to keep their history, reputation, and the will of their seniors alive through active activities. Also, through interviews with international students, we were able to observe the club life of international students indirectly. In particular, when I combined the interviews with international students and the interviews with club presidents, I felt that there was a lack of information for international students. Since there are many international students who are exchange students at Inha University, it would be nice if more consideration was given to the international students in various dimensions such as providing information so that the exchange between Korean and international students can be smoother. I hope Inha University students will continue to have a happy club life in the future.

김나영 nnayyo@naver.com

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