Evelyn: It’s time to say goodbye, 마지막 인사

It’s cringey saying it out loud but to say that this past year has been a wild ride would be an understatement. Truly. The decision to come on exchange is one I will never regret. The opportunity to live in a new country, learn a new language, experience a new culture, and meet so many people from all around the world. 

Left to right: USA, Korea, Korea, NZ (Jackson!), China

At the end of last semester, I was not ready to go home. I felt like I had more to do, more to see. At the end of this semester, even though I’m sad to leave I think I’m ready to. Besides, I still have to go back to UoA to complete my final semester and capstone courses… *sighs*

While I did, of course, learn a lot from my professors, what I will admittedly remember the most are the memories I made with the people I met here. Again, cringey, but true. Not only did I make endless memories with them that I will look back on and giggle over, but I learnt a lot from them as well. I learnt new words in their languages, I learnt about aspects of their countries and cultures, and I learnt important life skills through the countless interactions I had with all sorts of people.

What’s one thing that left the biggest impression on me? I would probably say the school spirit that is especially evident at school events. The Ko-Yon Games and the university festivals are events that I would not have been able to experience at home. These experiences are some that will be engrained into my memories.

While I have learnt a lot about other places and people, I have also learnt a lot about myself as well as for myself which will be useful in the future. I have learnt that while I am still introverted, I can be extroverted if I allow myself to relax a bit more because the experiences or friendships that could be made will be worth it. Sounds obvious, I know, but it’s a lot easier said than done. I also learnt that it’s okay to not get along with everyone. There are so many people in the world and it’s impossible to get along with every single person you meet. 

Coming home I think what I look forward to the most apart from seeing my family and friends again is probably the temperate weather…not feeling like you’re one degree away from melting under the heat of the sun.

While it is bittersweet, all good things must come to an end. But who knows, maybe I’ll go overseas to do a master’s.

Thank you 360 International for the opportunity, thank you to Korea University for accepting me into their programme, and thank you to all the people I met during exchange for making this year one of the best yet ❤️

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