South Korean students spend summer at UND

Eight college students from South Korea are spending their summer break on the University of North Dakota campus as part of a program designed to attract more foreign students.

The students are living on campus, working full-time jobs and taking English classes, said Kathleen Vacek, coordinator of UND’s summer programs.

“It’s a good way to attract international students,” Vacek said. “They get a sense of the college life here, the region as a whole and the educational value we provide. “When they return home they’ll serve as an ambassador of sorts and maybe they will come back to attend graduate school."

The students pay for their room, board and classes. Three of the students are working on the UND campus and five have landed off-campus jobs. UND and the North Dakota Trade Office worked with area employers to help the international students find jobs, Vacek said.

“Of course there is always some culture shock, but they’re pretty excited to learn their way around town, practice their English skills and gain some independence,” she said.

The students will complete the seven-week summer work and travel program on Aug. 16.

UND officials are considering hosting more international students next summer, some possibly from China, Vacek said.

UND’s summer work and travel program was developed by UND and the state Trade Office with assistance from the Association for International Practical Training and Rep. Earl Pomeroy, D-N.D.

“It’s a great way to promote our higher education system and build on North Dakota’s relations with other countries,” said Mark Johnson, the Trade Office’s director of international management.

For more information about the summer work and travel program, contact Jeff Zent, communications director with the North Dakota Trade Office, at (701) 235-3638, or at