The cost of life and education in South Korea is low. Tuition is the single largest expenditure for every overseas student. Scholarships to enrol in South Korea are widely offered to students from India.
South Korea, a little nation in the middle of Asia, appears often in the media. Whether it's the country's tumultuous relationship with its northern neighbour, the global popularity of K-pop, the excellence of Korean dramas, the deliciousness of Korean cuisine, or the country's astounding 97% Internet penetration rate, South Korea is seldom out of the news.
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The Republic of Korea, from which sprung such multinational conglomerates as Samsung, Hyundai, KIA, etc., is widely admired not just for its prodigiously successful businesses but also for its highly educated populace (98% literacy rate) and sophisticated work culture.
In recent years, South Korea has gained widespread attention as a promising new location for overseas students to pursue higher education. The world's 10th biggest economy is quickly becoming a top destination for international students, thanks to the inclusion of at least 40 institutions in the most recent QS Rankings list.
Squid Game, a smashing success on Netflix in South Korea, starred Anupam Tripathi, an Indian actor, as Abdul Ali. Tripathi attended Korea University in Seoul on a full scholarship.
India's foreign ministry has estimated that there are over 1,300 Indian scholars now enrolled in universities in South Korea. So, why has it suddenly become everyone's favourite place to further their foreign education?
Optimal educational benchmarks
Higher education in South Korea is renowned for its strict adherence to academic standards. The nation is a major economic player, and it requires a trained labour force in order to maintain its current rate of success.
In terms of the number of articles included in the Science Citation Index in 2021, South Korea placed 13th worldwide. South Korean universities provide instruction in a diverse array of fields, including but not limited to the arts and design, economics and business, science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. In South Korea, there are three tiers of universities and colleges that provide advanced degrees. Universities often provide programs leading to the master's and doctorate levels.
There are national universities that are controlled by the federal government, public universities that are run by state or regional governments, and private colleges that are funded by charitable organisations. According to QS World University Rankings, Seoul National University has the highest concentration of foreign students. The Korea Advanced Institute, Yonsei University, and Korea University are just a few more of the country's excellent educational institutions.
The education ministry specifies precise standards for schools on faculty makeup, curriculum, infrastructure, and degree conferral, among other things, in order to preserve the best quality of education.
Most colleges and institutions offer classes taught in English. Many colleges and universities now provide basic Korean language classes for non-native speakers. With its Study in Korea program, the Korean government hopes to attract 200,000 foreign students to enrol in Korean colleges by 2023.
Cost-effective housing, tuition, and subsidies
The cost of life and education in South Korea is low. Tuition is the single largest expenditure for every overseas student. Scholarships to enrol in South Korea are widely offered to students from India. Financial aid is available for Indian students studying in Korea via programs like the Global Korea Scholarship and the Asian Students' Scholarship in Korea.
In addition, students often rely on internships and part-time work to help them pay for school. Working hours are limited to 20 per week while in school but are unrestricted when on vacation with a D-2 Student Visa for South Korea. When they graduate, students may apply for the D-10 visa that would allow them to begin their job search immediately.
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To facilitate the immigration of foreign students interested in studying the entertainment and cultural industries, the government plans to develop the ‘Hallyu visa,’ which is equivalent to the UK's HPI visa. The term ‘Hallyu,’ which means ‘Korean wave’ in English, is often used to attract more top performers from across the world.
‘K-pop’ and ‘K-dramas’ have given Korea a lot of soft power.
Global audiences are huge fans of Korean media and entertainment. South Korean culture has spread over the globe because of exports like K-pop, K-drama, and Korean cuisine, notably in India. BTS and BLACKPINK both have huge followings in India.
Netflix found that interest in Korean dramas in India has increased by 370 percent in the last year. In part because of South Korea's soft power, members of Generation Z are following their interests and visiting or studying in the nation.
Safety considerations and other aspects have also been important. On the Secure Cities Index 2021, South Korea's capital, Seoul, placed 25th, indicating that the nation is generally safe.
One of Asia's most developed economies, South Korea ranks fourth in the region. A centre of scientific discovery and technology development. Students looking to launch an international career will find the country's extensive and diverse business sector to be an interesting and promising option.
(Edited by : Sudarsanan Mani)
First Published: IST