The Korean Section and the Korean Language Flagship Center (KLFC) held the ninth annual Korean Culture Day on February 10, 2017 at the Center for Korean Studies (CKS). The promotional flyer of this event was designed by Kai Kojimoto, a member of the UH Korean Club, Hanwoori.

The event started off with the performance of the pungmul (traditional Korean percussion instruments) band led by Ki-Un Lee, representative of the Hawaii Korean Pungmul Club. More than 400 visitors attended the event including local high school students and members of the local community. The participants had an opportunity to experience various Korean traditional games and activities, try on beautiful Korean hanbok and take photos, color traditional Korean masks, design their one and only fan using Korean-style colored paper, and fold colored paper into an adorable Korean lucky bag. They also had the chance to visit information tables run by the Hawaiʻi Language Road Map and the Korean Flagship Program.

Mr. Sang Ryun Lee, a famous local Korean artist who has graciously shared his expertise for a few years at the culture day event, helped students write Korean hangul calligraphy and provided a precious opportunity for students to experience Korean traditional woodblock printing of the Korean map from a block that he himself had carved. Hanwoori Korean club students also supported the event by conducting a Korean language/culture Jeopardy game.

Consistently one of the most popular activities at the cultural event, the talent show, took place in the Auditorium in the afternoon. Ten teams of Korean language students competed enthusiastically, performing their best K-pop renditions. Professor Shinichiro Fukuda from the Japanese section, Dr. Seol-A Kim from the Music department, and Ms. Lydia Chung, the Coordinator of the Korean Flagship Center, graciously agreed to act as judges at the talent show.  One of the highlights of the show was the special video produced by Hye-Young Smith featuring almost all the Korean section teachers and several Korean Flagship students lip-syncing to ‘Cheer up’ by Twice, a K-pop girl group. Mr. Todd Ashida’s enthusiastic dancing for the video received delighted cheers from the audience.

Many special guests were in attendance from UH organizations and representative local Korean businesses. Our very own LLL Dean Laura Lyons, Associate Dean Kimi Kondo-Brown, and EALL Department Chair Robert Huey were spotted showing their support by participating in activities. The warm-hearted words of encouragement from Korean faculty members and visits by Emeritus Professor Ho-min Sohn and retired Professor Dong-Jae Lee were also great support for the event.

Our Korean graduate students committed countless hours of their time to prepare and manage various fun and educational activity tables. Additionally, numerous student volunteers in the Korean programs—Flagship and non-Flagship B.A. students and Professional-Track M.A. students—helped make it possible for yet another successful event.

We are very fortunate to have received funds and donations from the following organizations and businesses: the Korean Flagship Language Center, the Francis & Betty Ann Keala Fund in Arts and Sciences, Palama Supermarket, TonyMoly, Fabric Mart, Ohana Pacific Bank, Kukui Food International Inc., Hawaii Christian Church, Aloha Drycleaners and Laundry, NexGen, Nature Republic at Pearlridge, and a personal sponsor Yong Don Nam. The Korean Culture Day supporters also include the College of Languages, Linguistics & Literature, the Center for Korean Studies, the Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures, and the EALL “Korean Language and Literature” Fund.

 

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