University of Mississippi

Jean Steinwinder’s Korean Studies

Namdaemun, one of eight gates in the fortress wall of Seoul, South Korea

Namdaemun, one of eight gates in the fortress wall of Seoul, South Korea

On her first trip outside the South, Jean Steinwinder headed to South Korea for six months before her graduation from the University of Mississippi.

“I’ve had a great interest in Korean culture and language for years and wanted to study there before graduating,” she said. “I plan to teach English in Korea, so this was the perfect opportunity to see the country while taking classes for my major.”

Steinwinder enrolled in Korea University’s Summer Intensive Korean Program and spent her fall semester as an exchange student at the university.

After completing an associate’s degree at Copiah-Lincoln Community College, the Wesson, Miss., native learned about something special at UM. “Ole Miss offered a linguistics degree and Korean classes, and I was determined to go,” she said, adding that she found additional opportunities through the Study Abroad Office. To help defray study expenses in Korea, she secured a Gilman Scholarship and a Freeman-ASIA Award.

Steinwinder took full advantage of the Department of Modern Languages offerings. “During the first semester of Korean classes, our teacher arranged many social events like Korean Fun Time and Korean Language Table, where we mingled with Korean students and I made a lot of friends,” said Steinwinder.

The department is committed to developing very high language proficiencies in its students, said Donald Dyer, professor and department chair. “Jean is emblematic of that success.”