This forum has helped me a lot with some questions I had, but there's one problem: mostly are about US people there are going to Korea. not about other foreigners.
I'm trying to learn Korean by myself, but I really wanted to go to Korean to study it. I went to many Korean college websites. My question is if there are many other foreigners there. if there's any prejudice.. if it's possible to get a job even if you don’t speak Korean very well..
Ah, about the food, I just read it's much cheaper if you eat Korean food but isn’t it too spicy? The food is also one of my concerns because many housing places give you 2meals per day for free (or included to the fee, if you may) but what if you can't handle the spiciness or something? eheheh It may be a lame question, but well.. it would be nice to know.
Thanx for the help!
I can assure you that shouldyou enroll in one of the university Korean programs, it will not be dominated by Americans. In fact, there will be plenty of people from non-English speaking countries. The instruction is almost completely in Korean anyway, so English-speakers will have no special advantage.
Also, if spicy food is a problem, you will have to be careful what food you purchase, but you can get by. Not all Korean food is spicy, but avoid anything that is red-colored. Should you stay at a place that provides meals, make it clear to the land lady that you need food that is not so spicy, and only choose a place where you will have that option.
I second javiskefka. Typically, Korean-language classes are given in 99% Korean and 1% English. There are many speakers of other languages that attend those classes. In my particular class, it was the standard textbook class makeup - 1 from France, 1 from Singapore, 1 from Hong Kong, 3 from Japan, etc...I can say that the non-U.S. students made the class that much more interesting. I had to rely on my Korean to communicate which for me was a lot of fun - but I have to admit, I did cheat and use English during breaktime
As for the food, the meals that are provided are usually very simple Korean staples like 김치찌게 and other stews. They generally aren't very spicy.
I've noticed that Koreans are acute to most foreigners' sensitivity to spiciness and will deliberately make a normal dish less spicy even without requesting it. It actually frustrated me because I had to spell it out each time I ordered that I indeed wanted it spicy as I like spicy foods.
Rest assured, there are many college students that speak Spanish who want to practice it with a native speaker. If you were to go to Korea and attend a university program, as long as you would want to do language exchange, you'd be quite popular in my opinion.
I don't know about that sensitivity to foreigners thing...
I wouldn't say that many of the places where I ate in Korea were very receptive of special orders. In fact there was sometimes even a pressure for everyone in the group to order the same thing to make it easier on the kitchen staff! That said, asking for less spiciness is not a very bizarre request, but just keep in mind that your bowl of haejangguk might come from the same pot as everyone else's with no special preparation.