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Recent Alumni

BŁASZCZAK Małgorzata Country : PolandMaster of Arts in International Development at Park Chung Hee School of Policy and Saemaul / Yeungnam University"The thing I enjoyed the most during my study at PSPS was its truly diverse international environment. I cannot think of any other place with people representing so many various countries and cultures, except for the United Nations General Assembly. Studying with classmates from five different continents, representing different religions, humors, and speaking different languages, we have proved that true international cooperation is not only imaginable, but also achievable in real life."

Why did you decide to study Saemaul UNDONG in the PSPS?

As a regional government officer in Poland, I was sent to Yeungnam University to participate in a Korean Language & Culture Program, which was organized by Gyeongsangbuk-do Province for their sister provinces. During that time, I was able to observe how Korean people devoted tremendous effort to lift up their lives and combat poverty. At that moment, I began to fall in love with Korea, and so I wanted to learn more about the Land of the Morning Calm. After a quick research, I realized that Yeungnam University generously offers scholarships to people who would like to gain detailed knowledge of Korean development and its applicability in other countries.

What is your most impressive experience in the PSPS?

The most impressive experience I had in PSPS was discovering day-by-day how Poland and Korea are similar, even though these two countries are located almost 8 thousand kilometers away from each other. Just to mention a few things, similar to Korea, Poland is sandwiched between by two large and imperialistic superpower nations. Poland has been invaded by Germany and Russia countless of times in the past, while Korea has been for centuries swayed by Chinese influence before ultimately succumbing to Japan colonization in the first half of the 20th century. Nevertheless, both countries fought and resisted imperialism in the hopes of keeping themselves a separate and proud people. Despite being oppressed for such a long time, South Korea is currently one of the leading economies in the world, while, Poland is making its way to become one of the powerhouses in Central and Eastern Europe. Aside from having similar history, both Poles and Koreans are into pickled cabbage, dumplings and alcoholic beverages!

Please tell us what your job in your country is.

As a Project Development Manager at Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA), I am responsible for developing bilateral economic cooperation between Poland and Korea. My main obligations include carrying out market research and supporting Korean companies in applying for public procurements. Moreover, I am also responsible for organising trade delegations and fair trade events.

With your Saemaul UNDONG knowledge, what do you want to do for your country?

The current position of Poland is totally different in economic, social and political terms than the position of South Korea while Saemaul Undong had been implemented. Although SMU cannot be applied in Poland in its original form, I am certain that my beloved country (Polska biało czerwoni) can learn valuable lessons from South Korea. Lessons if taken strongly, can help to foster economic development in the future. Personally, I would like to popularize the three virtues of SMU in Poland: diligence, self-help and cooperation. As the former U.S. President, John F. Kennedy once said "… ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country."

Your biography

    • Name: BŁASZCZAK Małgorzata
    • Nationality: Polish
    • 2014-2015 - YEUNGNAM UNIVERSITY, Republic of Korea
      MA in International Development Cooperation
      MA in Tourism and Recreation
    • 2009 (6 months) – CHIANG MAI UNIVERSITY, Thailand
      Sustainable Development, Exchange Student
      BA in Tourism and Recreation
    • Present: Project Development Manager, Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA)
    • Past: Junior Inspector, Department of Culture, Promotion and Tourism, the Office of the Marshal of the Mazowieckie Voivodeship
    • 2014 - Global Saemaul Forum; 27 August, 2014
    • 2010 – ‘Chopin/Polska/the Course’ – volunteer at a tall-ship, promoting Poland as a tourism destination in Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium and France, the campaign was organized by Polish Tourism Organisation.
    • 2009 – Exchange Student at Chiang Mai University, Thailand (I was granted an EU scholarship within Erasmus Mundus - External Cooperation Window Programme).