Blog #14: Response to Ivy League Drop Out Rate- Better late then never!
November 23, 2008
1. What does Kim say is the most likely explanation for the high dropout rate among Koreans?
Kim says the most likely explanation for this phenomenon is lack of integration of American culture among Korean students since they are forced to study rather than participate in extra curricular activities. Kim considers extra curricular activities to be a crucial factor for foreign students like Korean students to effectively adapt to American culture. However, since these students are forced by their parents to choose study over activities, Koreans cannot get used to American life-style ultimately resulting in high drop out rate among Koreans. Kim’s explanation shows Korean parents’ distorted view of extra curricular activities; to Korean parents extracurricular activities are like Internet games rather than development of personal intersts into life-long passion.
2. How does the dropout rate among Koreans compare to the dropout rate among other groups?
Drop out rate among Koreans is the highest among other groups like Americans (34%), Indians (21%), and Chinese (25%). The fact that drop out rate among Chinese is higher than that of Koreans is especially shocking since Chinese and Koreans share similar ambition towards education. Whether Chinese were more aggressive towards the integration of American life-style or not, Koreans have a seriousness weakness that would cost them not only money but perhaps credibility to presitgious colleges.
3. What are you currently doing to increase your own college readiness? Is there anything you think you should do before you graduate from high school to be better prepared for university?
I am currently working on my attitude towards academics and my knowledge to prepare for college-level education. I am trying to work hard in every assignment during 2nd Semester so I could overcome this attitude of “oh-I-do-not-care-because-I-am-accepted-to-college.” In college, it’s not so much as grade anymore- it’s about passion. Although I am not sure I can kindle a sense of passion towards every class I take, I should make sure I get rid of this attitude towards education. In order to do this, I think I will study something on my own about something that interests me. I should try to read more books on various subjects and try having academic discussion with anyone I can find- teachers, friends, and my family.
4. What else do you think about this article?
I think this is a good realistic blow to Korean students and parents. I have been always suspicious about ambitious Korean students going to Ivy League schools because they seem to be too focused on studying rather than socializing. What’s more, these students are proud that they are only studying; when I was in forensics competition where international schools and foreign language schools would compete against each other, these Daewon and Minsago students would look down at us because we do not study 24/7. I thought there was something wrong with that argument and tried to argue back but I just did not have to statistics or solid evidence to back up my evidence. Well, this article will be of good use for me in the future whenever Korean school students “mock” our school for not forcing students to study 24/7.