Jae Young Lim, a junior Global Affairs major at George Mason's Korea campus, was recently featured in the local news for her work with Onhappy, an Incheon-based NGO. Onhappy is a UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC)-approved NGO that operates 10 children’s centers in Incheon to provide English education programs to underserved communities.
Lim landed her internship with Onhappy through her work with Take Action for Virtue (TAV), a joint student club at Incheon Global Campus (IGC). While she was serving as TAV’s Vice President of Internal Planning, TAV signed an MOU with Onhappy, which meant Lim had to meet frequently with Onhappy to plan her programs in Incheon. Soon after, she was offered a project manager position for the fifth UNESCO International Conference on Learning Cities (ICLC), which will be held in Incheon this fall.
Lim’s internship is two-fold. First, she oversees a program she developed—a non-face-to-face English education program for underprivileged children in Incheon. As the program has been growing, she has been writing countless business plans and monitoring them, while also serving as a curator (mentor). Second, she also works as a translation project manager for UNESCO ICLC. This requires translating inquiries from overseas VIPs as well as recruiting and managing volunteers for the event.
“Meeting Onhappy initially felt like a burden because the program I had developed grew so much and there was a lot I had to manage,” said Lim. “But, when I went to distribute the tablet PCs sponsored by the city of Incheon to the children, that burden completely lifted. The children were so active during class and they loved the curators so much. Children who didn’t know the alphabet prior to our program have been improving their English each day, and it’s been rewarding to watch. And getting to see timid students learn to share their stories and become more proactive makes this program really worth it. I learned a lot from my internship with Onhappy and I feel like I'm discovering myself anew. It has also become a big turning point in terms of reevaluating my interests and capabilities.”
“I learned that English is a fun subject from the fun classes with the college students,” said a student enrolled in the program. “I look forward to the class each week because I now have someone who listens to my stories and empathizes with me.”
July 26, 2021