Ayuanna Alexander

South Korea

Hometown: Tallahassee, Florida
School: Leon
Sponsor District : District 6940
Sponsor Club: , Florida
Host District: 3680
Host Club: The Rotary Club of Seocheon


My Bio


Hello, I am a sophomore in high school. I will be a part of the 2017-2018 trip to Korea. For a long time I have been interested in Korean culture especially their music. I love generally all types music, especially Korean Pop. Because of that I am in Concert band and Marching band. The time I spend outside of band is usually catching up on my eating and sleep because my sleeping pattern which is extremely flipped. Many of my friends are in band, and the same grade as me. These are usually the people I hang out with after school. Almost all of my friends are in music related things, whether its guitar, orchestra, or chorus. When I go out its is usually to eat. Most of my friends say that I am a very talkative person who isn't afraid to speak her mind. I love any kind of food, but my favorite is pizza. I think the food I'm most ready to eat is probably Kimchi. Even though I am on my phone a lot, I think I get good grades. I hope my time in Korea will be a great learning experience, and that I will always have fun.

A picture of me with my host moms family

A picture of me with my host moms family

A picture of Seocheons mud beach

A picture of Seocheons mud beach

A picture of my host mom and brother

A picture of my host mom and brother

This is my closest friend Jisu.

This is my closest friend Jisu.

This is my second closest friend Myeongwon.

This is my second closest friend Myeongwon.

This is what my school looks like. It’s on top of a very big hill.

This is what my school looks like. It’s on top of a very big hill.

This is my classroom

This is my classroom

This is me in traditional Korean clothes for Chuseok.

This is me in traditional Korean clothes for Chuseok.

At the bottom of Naejyang mountain. There is a gazebo surrounded by water. I took a picture there.

At the bottom of Naejyang mountain. There is a gazebo surrounded by water. I took a picture there.

A picture of the snow in a town higher up that my friend took 2 days ago.

A picture of the snow in a town higher up that my friend took 2 days ago.

Right before the festival. Me and My close friend “Jisu” went to eat the special fried corn dogs.

Right before the festival. Me and My close friend “Jisu” went to eat the special fried corn dogs.

They put up a Christmas tree in my town square.

They put up a Christmas tree in my town square.

We are heading to Gunsan.

We are heading to Gunsan.

On the bus to go home after a long day.

On the bus to go home after a long day.

Waiting at the bus stop to go to Gunsan.

Waiting at the bus stop to go to Gunsan.

Me and my friend are trying on different sun glasses.

Me and my friend are trying on different sun glasses.

Waiting for the bus with my friend Subin.

Waiting for the bus with my friend Subin.

My friends entered the dress up show.

My friends entered the dress up show.

We took a class photo inside because it was snowing.

We took a class photo inside because it was snowing.

Our official class photo.

Our official class photo.

My host sister(left), me, and her friend(right),Hwi Young, at the line store in Itaewon, Seoul.

My host sister(left), me, and her friend(right),Hwi Young, at the line store in Itaewon, Seoul.

We are at a famous palace in Seoul. Near the US Embassy

We are at a famous palace in Seoul. Near the US Embassy

  • Ayuanna, Outbound to Korea

    It’s been a month since my last journal and many things have happened. I am half way finished with my school's two month break. I am also over half way finished with my exchange. I feel like it is going by fast, but also slowly at the same time. I really miss America and my friends, but at the same time I never want to leave Korea and I love it here.

    At the beginning of January I took a trip to Busan, which is one of the biggest cities in Korea. It wasn’t really that interesting because we only stayed one night and mostly just walked around. The trip costed me a lot of money, so for the rest of January I just stayed at home.

    Yesterday I went bowling with my host brother and sister. It was the most fun I'd had since our vacation period started. It was cool to be able to let go of all the worries that being an exchange student brings.

    This month we have school, but only for three days and I won’t be there for two of them. This will be the last time that I am in the same class as my current friends. I am a little sad to see the go, but I hope that they will not push themselves too hard as third years. In Korea there is a saying that third years are no different than robots. They only worry about studying, and barely have a social life. I wonder if I will still be able to meet my friends outside of school or if they will be too busy.

    Tomorrow I am going on a trip with my host sister to Seoul, the capital of Korea, and it will be the first time I’m not going with a Rotary Chairman. I am so excited to finally be free to go somewhere that isn’t with an overbearing adult.

    My host sister is the best. She is a former exchange student, so she understands that sometimes I want to go on trips when I don’t have enough money to. We have a lot of trips planned, even after I leave their house and go to my last host family. On February 20th and 21st we are going to a ski resort with one of her friends who wants to get better at Korean.

    About a week ago I Skyped one of my closest friends from America. We talked for hours and it was great to catch up on everything that I had missed. It was one of the longest conversations that I’d had since I came to Korea. It really helped me cure my homesickness that I was feeling.

    I have started to look for colleges, and I decided that I really want to study here in Korea. I usually talk to this former Exchange student that lived in my town. She now goes to the third best college in Korea. She helps me a lot with figuring out what to do once I get back to America, and how to come back to Korea after exchange.

    Click HERE to read more about Ayuanna and all her blogs

  • Ayuanna, Outbound to Korea

    Firstly, I want to start off by saying congratulations to the new exchange students for next year. I know that they will do great!!!

    So it’s been almost 5 months since I got here And a lot of stuff has happened since my last journal. For the first time I spent Christmas without my family and it was a little sad because not many Koreans celebrate Christmas here. Though I did video call my mom the day after Christmas because Korea is one day earlier than America could still did not feel the same.

    Since my last journal I change my host families. I now live in the country and I take a 30 minute bus to school every morning and every evening. In my new host family I have three siblings. There are two boys and one girl. They are all older than me. My host sister comes home on the weekends because she does not have college on the weekend. Though right now she is living at home because her college is on break. I don’t get to see my house brothers that much.

    Around mid December we had to take a lot of tests at my school. I did not know that I would have to participate in these tests so I didn’t really do that good. I even did that on English which really surprised all of the students in my class. Taking a test is very different than American test taking. They don’t use any electronic devices including computers on any of their test, and they have this newspaper like paper that has the questions on them and they can keep them and grade them after the test. During the English test they use the intercom to repeat the questions and the dialogs that are on the test. When the intercom is on it is very hard for me to concentrate on my test.

    About a week and a half ago, I was very sad because a very popular Korean singer died. A lot of Koreans liked him very much, and he was one of my favorite singers. Many people in Korea were sad, even a lot of my friends were very sad because he was part of a very popular group.

    Last week my school held a festival. Every class entered the talent show and dress up contest. There were many different performances, and my class also performed together. I can’t dance so they pilot me in charge of filming the video. It was a very fun day for me, and I got to see all of my friends bring out their funny sides.

    Yesterday was my last day of school before all of Korea takes a three month school break. It is kind of like the summer break of American schools.To celebrate all of my class went to a town 40 minutes away called Gunsan there we took pictures, shopped, and ate lunch together. It was a lot of fun and I’m glad that I didn’t have to spend my last day inside of school.

    Next year I will have a different set of classmates because in Korea the semesters are different than Americans. The semester that I got here was actually the second semester. Therefore, all of my friends will be moving on to the third year while I will take the first semester at the second year. I’m very scared that I will not be able to make friends as close as I was with my classmates this year.

    Overall, I love being here in Korea and it will be very sad when I leave. Though until then I will keep working hard at learning Korean.

    Click HERE to read more about Ayuanna and all her blogs

  • Ayuanna, Outbound to Korea

    So many things have happened since my last journal. I’ve made a lot of new friends, and I go out with my friends a lot now.

    I am also teaching myself how to draw, and it relieves my stress a lot. I did not really like to draw before I came to Korea, but a lot of times I sit in class, and I don’t have anything to do, so it keeps me occupied.

    Soon I will have to change houses. We change houses on December 2, and I move 30 minutes outside of my town. Now I will have to wake up way earlier than I used to. The host family that I am going to is new, so no one really knows anything about them. I don’t know if they have a child abroad like the other host families that I am going to go to, but I am looking forward to meeting them.

    Most of the tests for my grade are done so I get to hang out with my friends a lot more than I used to. Because Korea focuses heavily on studying and education I don’t get to talk to my friends as much as I used to talk to my friends in America. I don’t talk to the other exchange student from Florida as much as I did in the beginning but I hear that they are having a great time, and I am having a great time too.

    I wish I could get more pins for my jacket, but I don’t meet many exchange students and my district is very small. There are only three exchange students including me. I really don’t think I will ever meet the other exchange students in Korea, but we do talk in a group chat.

    I go on many trips with my host mom in my host brother. They treat me very well, and I don’t feel homesick very much. My fluency in Korean is getting better, and I can basically understand what people say to me if they talk a little slower. I try to answer everyone in Korean as much as I can.

    At the beginning of November we had our first in country trip to a mountain called, “Naejyang.” It is very popular in Korea. There were many foreigners, so we could enjoy the mountain without being stared at. Though it was very cold and the lines were very long so we did not stay for long. I got to eat this very delicious food called “Ddeokbeokki.” It is eaten in Korea a lot.

    Last week we had a festival in my town, and I was crowned the strongest girl. It wasn’t very hard to beat the other girls because they are more petite than me. Going to the festival allowed me to get closer to the people in my class because many of them were a part of the booths that were there. I will be very sad when the school year ends and I have to make new friends. In Korea it is different, the first semester starts in April and ends in June. Then the second semester starts in July and ends in December.

    Yesterday it snowed for the very first time. It was so pretty, but the snow did not stick so it quickly melted by today. In Korea it is typical of couples to watch the first snow together because it signifies being together forever. It was the first time that I saw snow in eight years even though I slept through it. Though in the morning when I was walking to school it was not very fun to slide on the ice.

    Since Korea is very big on cosmetics, my friends wanted to help me try cosmetics. It also helps that my mom wanted me to try cosmetics too so once our school break comes we will go out of town to buy cosmetics. I am looking for to going out of town for the first time without my host family.

    Click HERE to read more about Ayuanna and all her blogs

  • Ayuanna, Outbound to Korea

    Click HERE to read more about Ayuanna and all her blogs

    It’s been almost 2 months since since I got here, and I have to say that I thought Exchange would be different than how it’s going. There’s been a lot of good times, but they’re has also been a lot of bad times.

    I do have a lot of friends here in Korea because we don’t switch classes like in America. I’m learning a lot of Korean very fast. I even know colors now in Korean, and now I’m starting to memorize animals. My friends help me a lot with learning different things, and I have a really cool homeroom teacher who helps me translate things I don’t understand. There are times when I don’t get Korean etiquette right, and they will kind of get mad at me, but overall though forgive me if I explain that I didn’t know what I did wrong. I also joined a school club that does everything and anything. I don’t really know what the club is called, but so far we went to Seoul, which is the capital of Korea, and we asked foreigners questions about Korea. We also went to an elementary school in our town and taught kindergarten students English songs so I think it is an English club! 

    I try to interact with as many people as I can but the language barrier really stops me a lot. I get along with my host family very well and tomorrow we are even going to my grandmothers house for the upcoming holiday called to Chuseok in Korea.

  • Ayuanna, Outbound to South Korea

    Click HERE to read more about Ayuanna and all her blogs

    So far my exchange has been really good even though I have only been here for one week. I get along very well with my host family especially my host brother who speaks the most English out of all of them even though he is only 13. Recently my host mom's family came down from Seoul and they knew English really well, so we went to Gonsan ,a city that most people go to to have fun, and went to a festival and bowling, so that was very exciting for me. Monday was my first day of school and everyone really surprised me with how nice they were!! They all wanted to shake my hand and asked me questions but they were too afraid to speak English because they thought it wasn't good. I even met two other exchange student one who went to Thailand and another who went to Florida but they were in the Jacksonville area. I could not really do anything in class because I did not understand Korean so in the future I hope to get better at Korean. I have Korean lessons on Tuesdays and on Wednesday afternoons I think that will really help in progressing my Korean. There is a lot of stuff that I need to get in order to further myself into the schools normality. Like in school they use slippers instead of regular shoes, so I need to buy those. Also after eating lunch they brush their teeth so I will need to remember to bring a toothbrush and toothpaste with me. I also need a book bag because I did not bring mine with me because it was too big. Emotionally I feel like I am at home in Seocheon I really like the tranquility of the town even though I've only been here for a week. As I was walking through the town it was very quiet and people were very polite. I feel like I will make great friends in Seocheon because they try so hard to help me in class and include me in everything they do. They even told me I could join their lunch group and that made me very happy. I hope everyone even my host family will be understanding and help me learn Korean!

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