From South Korea to the U.S.

Student Faith Na from South Korea tells how it was in South Korea and what it’s like in the U.S.

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From South Korea to the U.S.

Bianca Smith, Staff Writer

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     Senior Faith Na attended the dance studio 1MILLION when she lived in South Korea. They are a very popular dance studio. They have a YouTube channel with a following of 19.4 million subscribers.

     Na’s mother is a student here studying Christianity. That’s why Na moved to Kansas. Her mother wants to be ordained and to become a pastor. She attends the Central Baptist Theological Seminary facility in Shawnee. Na attended middle school and part of her freshman year in Philadelphia.

I miss my dad, cousins and grandparents, but I am glad that my dad is able to visit me about four times a year”

— Faith Na

     Her mother already has a master’s degree in Christian education that she earned in South Korea. She came to the U.S. so she could get her Master of Divinity because her ministry back in South Korea was an English ministry.

     Na’s mother wanted to have her Master Divinity in the U.S. because it would help her speak English better and it would help her learn church rituals and pastoral care that’s a little different from the one in South Korea.

     Another reason why is because of the character of her seminary’s denomination. Which is, American Baptist, they encourage female leadership and ordain women who want to become pastors.

     She and her mom left Seoul when she was 12. Her father, cousins and entire family remained in South Korea. It’s just her mother, her and their dog.

     “I miss my dad, cousins and grandparents, but I am glad that my dad is able to visit me about four times a year,” Na said.

She misses South Korea all the time, especially the food. She misses her grandmother’s food. She loved her rice cake. Her grandmother makes rice cake for her whenever she visits.

     “She always prepares it soft and chewy,” Na said.

     Na’s mother cooks all kinds of Korean dishes, including some famous dishes such as Galbi and Bibimbob. All of the ingredients that she needs for those dishes are available here. There are oriental markets for them.

     Na can also cook Korean dishes. She can make spicy fried rice cake. All she needs is some rice cake and Korean hot pepper sauce and sugar sometimes with some onions added.

     “I mix them together in a little bit of boiling water and cook,” Na said.

     School in South Korea isn’t very different than school here in the United States. She had to wear a uniform in middle school, though she never attended high school there. Na doesn’t miss wearing a uniform much but sometimes she feels like wearing it.

     Na says that she had a good relationship with the teachers, she respected them and they took care of her.

     The subjects she studied there are the same as the subjects she studies here. Her favorite class in South Korea was music.

     Na’s favorite class here at Northwest is choir. She would like to major in music and attend a music college.

“I like Northwest because they have a lot of music activity and opportunity especially choir,” Na said.

     When Na wasn’t at school she hung out with friends. They would study together, go shopping, and sometimes go to karaoke to sing and dance.

     But Na wasn’t just a student, she was also a dancer. She attended a dance academy every day in South Korea and also taught a hip-hop dance class. Na teaches a dance class here now too. She attends the dance academy Street Style in Overland Park.

     The dance class she attended in South Korea is similar to the one she attends here. The one in South Korea is internationally famous so sometimes they would have celebrities come and dance with them.

     “The coaches there are famous also. It is located in the Gangnam area in Seoul,” Na said.

     Na wasn’t a theater kid before she came to Kansas, but now she is. She attends plays and she’s in the upcoming musical. She’s been to singing competitions for choir and even competed in state competitions.

     One thing that is done differently in South Korea is the use of utensils. They use chopsticks and we use forks and spoons. She really enjoys pizza and hamburgers.

     Some of Na’s favorite fast-food restaurants in South Korea would be, “Mom’s Touch” and “Lotteria”. They sell burgers, fried and much more.

     She thinks that if she said restaurants like “Chick-fil-a” or “Chipotle” to people in South Korea they wouldn’t know what she was talking about.

     “In America, you guys have a lot of diversity, different cultural foods,” Na said. “Really interesting Mexican food, American food or Italian.”

     Na says she would go back to South Korea. But she wants to attend college here and have a job here.

     “So I may be back and forth here and there,” Na said.

     Her mother starts her ministry in Korea so she will go back this May. They will be separated for a while. But Na will visit her every summer and winter break.