Yoo Jin Lee

Home Country:

South Korea/ Guatemala


Secondary Education MAT


May 2016

Why did you choose JMU?

One of my goals during high school was to attend a college in the United States. While talking with my college advisor about my future, he told me that when he was in high school, he had applied to James Madison University but wasn’t accepted. I asked him about the education department, and he spoke very highly of it. He recommended JMU, because educationally and socially he believed that I would be able to grow, and financially, it wasn’t going to be a burden to my parents. This was music to my ears! Everything about JMU sounded amazing. I did some research and saw how beautiful the campus was. So, I applied and got into JMU! Although I had some other options, it made the most sense for me to choose JMU.

What is your favorite class?

Right now, my favorite class is MSSE 625: Assessment in Secondary Education. It’s a class filled with hands-on activities, group work, and a lot of information. I’m learning everything from lesson plan making to on-going assessments and summative assessments. I’m also getting a chance to mingle with people who have a similar career path as me. Although it’s a three-hour class once a week, I feel like it’s short and not long enough!

Besides studying, how do you occupy your time?

If I’m not at Carrier Library, I love spending time with my friends. Last year, I had the chance to get close to the LINKers. We formed our own little family. Every weekend, we hung out either at somebody’s apartment or at a restaurant. We went to watch movies. We celebrated each other’s birthdays. And we are still really close. Aside from friends, I like going to events on campus: culture shows, concerts, conferences, plays, musicals, and etc. There is so much to do on campus! If I’m not on campus, I’m at home cooking. According to my friends, I am a decent cook. I love cooking Korean food, like Kimchi soup and Kimchi fried rice.

What clubs/activities are you involved with at JMU?

Currently, I am an active member of the International Student Association (ISA). It is an organization focused on spreading diversity around campus. This past year, ISA has grown and reached many other clubs and has become a very respectable club representing diversity. And when I can, I try to go to general body meetings of other organizations, like Asian Student Union.

What do you like best about JMU?

I am the type of person that likes to eat, but seriously eat a lot! I enjoy having a meal with friends, and JMU provides us with the best! My favorite thing about JMU is the food. We have so much to choose from! Our campus is huge, and there is a place to eat everywhere. There are 21 places to choose from! Our school ranked 2nd in the nation for best college food. No wonder the food is amazing here!

What advice would you give to international students who are considering studying at JMU?

Keep a positive mind; everything is a learning experience. As international students, we have expectations of what college life in the U.S. can be. Socially, we want to ‘fit in’ with the cool kids. Academically, we want to succeed. Sometimes, things aren’t the way we think or want them to be. It’s important to keep a positive mind and take every situation and mistake as a learning experience. I have learned that no matter how difficult, serious, and big a problem seems, as long as I look at it from a positive perspective, I can learn from it and not make the same mistake again. Just relax and enjoy the beginning of a new chapter in your life!

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