There are many things that make Democracy Prep special. Among them are our Global Citizens Program and Korean Culture and Language Program, both of which have a mission to provide our students with a unique and in-depth immersive experience that fosters a development of identity and cross-cultural awareness.
We believe that there are many benefits to fully immersing in Korean culture and language, the most significant being unity and equity. When our scholars enter high school, most will be entirely new to Korean, which creates a unifying learning experience that they take part in together. Scholars also bring varying degrees of linguistic abilities to the program, allowing for an engaging and dynamic educational environment where scholars learn from their teachers and each other.
How does our Global Citizens Program come into play?
Traveling enables all of us to reflect on our own identity, increase our awareness of similarities and differences between and among global cultures, and discover values and traditions different from our own. As scholars spend their high school years learning about Korean culture and language, visiting community hubs like K-Town in Manhattan and temples in the tri-state area, and engaging with various exhibitions in museums around the city, it is also important for our scholars to bring their learning experiences to life. What better way to do that authentically than to take a trip to South Korea?
Concordia Korean Language Village Camp, Summer 2022
During summer break, some of our scholars were determined to work on their fluency and put their language skills to the test. Four rising seniors got the opportunity to travel to Bemidji, Minnesota and participate in the acclaimed Concordia Korean Language Village Camp!
This program is a 24/7 immersion environment, where all participants could only speak in Korean. Going to a Concordia Language Village is “just like entering a new country. You’ll get your Village passport stamped at customs, receive your cabin assignment, and help us determine your language proficiency.” Another unique aspect of this program is that participants exchange their USD for Korean won to purchase items such as snacks, stamps, and ice cream at the camp store. Every day in this program was definitely a new opportunity for our scholars to exercise their language fluency and test their sense of adventure.
Hear from Darhian Francisco from Democracy Prep Charter High School about his summer in Minnesota by clicking on the image below!
The Experiment, Summer 2022
That’s not all! Two rising seniors also had the opportunity of a lifetime to travel to South Korea with The Experiment. During this 4-week enrichment program, our scholars not only practiced the language skills they had been learning for 3 years, but also explored themes of peace and conflict resolution while experiencing South Korea’s distinct blend of modern K-pop culture and ancient traditions through a series of workshops and journeys to historical sites.
What is also unique about The Experiment is that participants got to see a different perspective of Korean daily life. Our scholars weren’t just tourists, they lived like locals as they completed a homestay with Korean families, where they fully immersed themselves in local culture and communities.
Hear from Kassy, scholar at Bronx Prep High School, and Jason, scholar at Harlem Prep High School, about the transformative experience they had over the summer by clicking on the images below.
Our story doesn’t end there! Over spring break, many of our seniors spent their time visiting South Korea, where they visited incredible monuments, wore their specially made hanbok, saw amazing sights, engaged in sister school visits and homestays, and ate delicious food like tteokbokki and kalguksu.
Democracy Prep Harlem High School
Democracy Prep Charter High School
Democracy Prep Endurance High School
Harlem Prep High School
Bronx Prep High School
We are proud to provide opportunities for our scholars where they get to put their language and life skills to practice. While our scholars have learned about King Sejong, it’s another thing entirely to stand in front of the landmark that commemorates his accomplishments, right in the heart of Seoul.
International travel allows our scholars to forge deep connections and build many skills that prepare them for life after high school. Most importantly, traveling abroad helps scholars understand that there is no corner of the world to which they can not be successful. With the world as their classroom, the sky’s the limit for our scholars!