November 15, 2012
Students in an interdisciplinary Food and Culture course recently had an opportunity to hear and learn about Korean food and culture firsthand, via a live video chat with a South Korean student.
Avila’s School of Visual & Communication Arts and the Culture Complex, a Korean business that promotes English language learning activities and language exchanges, arranged the video chat between the students and South Korean student 이종수 (pronounced EE Jong Soo). The Korean student spoke on a wide range of food and cultural topics, including common Korean foods such as rice, noodles, kimchee and soup, as well as Korean etiquette and how Korean society is dealing with issues of hunger and obesity.
이종수 also took the opportunity to speak with his American counterparts about American food. He said his favorite American food is the hamburger, though he added that McDonald’s in his homeland serves slightly different offerings than those in the U.S.
The students learned how to say hello in Korean and how to pronounce their guest’s name. Afterward, the class took a group picture with a message of thanks, written in Korean, to post on the Facebook page of Culture Complex.
Professors Eric Winter and Dotty Hamilton, Ph.D., are using food as a lens to look at intercultural understanding, symbolism in food packaging and film, the world’s changing food supply system and issues of hunger and conflict around food and water. Students have tried new foods from Ethiopia to Korea, visited local international markets and taken a trip to Shatto Milk Company, a Kansas City-area small-scale dairy farm and bottling operation.
Winter and Hamilton are developing a week-long student study trip to South Korea in spring 2014.
Avila University is a private, co-educational, values-based liberal arts institution founded by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, offering undergraduate, graduate, and adult degree programs. Avila University is located at 119th and Wornall Rd in southwest suburban Kansas City, Mo.