The Asian Center in the University of the Philippines Diliman held the Young Scholars’ Forum on Asian Culture, Politics, and Society last Feb. 23 at the GT-Toyota Asian Cultural Center. This event was made possible in cooperation with Yonsei University in Korea who fielded several scholars to provide insights and perspectives.

The various panels discussed a broad spectrum of topics including multi-cultural families and the various challenges they face in Asian societies. Kim Yo-Sun, Bak Yong-hun, and Cho Jung-Ki from Yonsei University focused on the  Southeast Asian Perceptions on International Marriage to Koreans based on feedback from College Students in Cambodia, Philippines, and Vietnam. Wang Hye-Suk and Park Sun-Young, also from Yonsei University, tackled a more delicate topic though by comparing the cultural challenges raised by the September 11 Attack in the USA with that of the Cheon’an Sinking in Korea.

Labor and economics was also a key concern in another panel. Ji Min-Woo and Seon Sung-Hye from Yonsei University pointed out the case of  Geom-O Technical High School and how it was a step to promote Skilled Labor and Heavy Chemical Industrialization in Korea. On the other hand, Choi Jin-Myung Choi and Cha So-Lin — both also from Yonsei University — focused on the new economic superpower status of China and its Regional Cooperation with Southeast Asia as exemplified by the Greater Mekong Sub-Region (GMS) Economic Cooperation Program.

On a slightly lighter note, the third panel discussed certain aspects of the Hallyu Wave. Marian Gongora from the University of the Philippines brought to the table the Identification and Distancing of Filipino Korean Language Students in Watching Korean Telenovelas. This was complemented by the succeeding discussion by Rex de Guzman that focused on Profiling the Idol Worship of Asian Superstars.

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