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The young students that dye the space with green! The very site of 2014 APRM - Korea!


‘Nature’ exists everywhere in our lives. There are so many things that cannot be discussed without mentioning nature in our lives such as house, furniture, paper, and even food. Likewise, nature and forest helps human life through various forms while bringing us mental relaxation and peace by itself. Now, there are young people who realized the importance of forest and nature and they intend to help mankind through profound understanding and knowledge on this area. Those people are the students of the College of Forest Science and College of Forest Environment from all over the world. These students who study having each and every goal in mind got together in Korea to exchange profound understanding and broader opinions on forest and nature. This is ‘APRM,’ the first Asia-Pacific Regional Meeting. From the planning and execution to management, the 1st ‘APRM-Korea’ was successfully promoted only with the efforts and passion of the students. Let’s take a closer look at the event site that was dyed with the ‘green’ mind for a week through the deep love and interest on forest and nature, as the students got together to develop opinions and share them with each other.




This ‘2014 APRM – Korea’ is not only a meeting formed with the strength of students but also a pan-national association of the students. Bolstered by the strength of students (graduates and undergraduates) from all over the world majoring in forest and forestry and belonged to the International Forestry Student's Association (IFSA), this event has become the opportunity to discuss and suggest solutions for the earth’s natural preservation and protection through mutual exchange and understanding since its establishment in 1979. Today, 69 organizations from about 40 countries are registered in IFSA and in Korea Kookmin University, Chungnam National University, and Seoul National University are registered. Annually, a big event called International Forestry Student's Symposium (IFSS) is held for 2 weeks in a member country and the 38th IFSS was held in Korea in 2010. This APRM is similar to IFSS and having emphasis on exchange and ties between the students of ‘Asia and Pacific region,’ this event was initially designed.


Q. Briefly introduce about APRM.

Hyo-won Park)
Class of 2011 in the Department of Forestry, Environment, and Systems in College of Forest Science
As it says, APRM is ‘Asia-Pacific Regional Meeting,’ a gathering of students majoring in forest and environment in the Asian and Pacific region. The field of forest environment is somewhat limited and fragmentary to promote research and studies in a single university or organization. This event was planned in order to solve such problem and offer a change to broaden the academic perspective through an exchange with global universities and students of forest environment, transcending the limited education in a university. 



Q. I heard that such results were realized only by the initiative and efforts of the students from the beginning. What was the most challenging thing while preparing the event?

Hyo-won Park)
Since it was a program promoted mainly by students, there were many difficulties. Tour program at forest science related public organizations and R&D facilities was planned for the students from foreign countries and arrangement of the tour program was the most challenging. The places like Korea Forest Research Institute, Jeonju Hanok Village, or Jeonju Hanji (Korean traditional paper) factory. Although it was a program with goodwill, it was somewhat suspicious for these organizations to offer such tour program to students like us unless we were part of a local organization or big public organization. However, professors of the department helped us a lot, especially, the academic advisor Dong-wook Ko and Dean of the College of Forest Science. They helped us to arrange the experience and tour programs besides the tour site selection and with their support, we were able to successfully promote the program. 

Ethan Lin) For me, progressing the plan by contacting students from other universities and countries besides Korea was most difficult. While Ms. Park took charge of the overall planning and organization of the event, such as arrangement for tour sites, accommodation, and dining for the participating students, I managed the provision of information to the students residing at different countries and departure of the participating students on the designated date without a problem. Since Facebook and email were the only means for contact, it was sometimes hard to get a hold of someone who was not able to access online due to personal reasons such as having a trip. I consider that to be the most difficult thing for me. Although we had such limitation and difficulties, I was very delighted that everyone came to Korea at the designated date. I felt it was worth managing such troubles.


Q. What effect can you expect through the program?
Hyo-won Park)
Since we managed such big event, I felt accumulation of competence and know-how while preparing the event. I think it is possible to reinforce the competence of international cooperation among the Korean students and utilize the pool of the students majoring in forestry in the Asian and Pacific region as global network. According to the global movement besides the currently hot cultural and academic exchange of each continent, it will introduce Korea to the Oceania area.


 <’LAB Tour’ in a forest science R&D facility promoted in Kookmin University>


Ethan Lin) That’s right. We were able to successfully hold the event with efforts and passion and in line with this, we plan to lay a solid foundation for the students to be joined in the future to share more beneficial and joyful program while learning. We will continue exerting efforts to develop this event as the venue of cultivating professional experts specialized in international cooperation while reinforcing the competence of the undergraduates and graduates majoring in forestry in the Asian and Pacific region. Ultimately, we plan to develop it, not as a one-time event, but into the ‘Win-Win’ project that can share and encourage thoughts and opinions of students from other countries.



Q. You visited Korea for this event. What was your first impression of Kookmin University?
Muhammad Azaz)
From Indonesia
I heard that Kookmin University is famous in Korea, so I felt the campus was very wide. I am very pleased to have a chance to study my major through the visit this time.

Minori Yoneda) From Japan
I was very impressed by the beautiful campus. Unlike Kyoto University that does not have art-related undergraduate course, artworks in and out of the campus buildings attracted my attention and the tall building looked refined.

Q. What did you feel after touring the R&D facilities of Kookmin University through this program?
Phoebe Margareta)
From Indonesia
The facilities were better than that of my school. Equipment such as batteries and electric devices seemed more hi-tech and such rich resource offers better educational environment to the students.

Mega Utami Prisca) From Indonesia
I was really happy when I first arrived in Kookmin University. It secured more effective and refined forest science R&D facilities by having MOU with my university in Indonesia. So I was happy while touring the facilities.

There are many things that we often forget as to how precious they are since these are always with us. ‘Nature’ is one of those things in human life. Our lives exist because of nature; however, we often forget about such fact as we are preoccupied with our busy living. There are lessons that we need to grasp in our surroundings. There are students who exert efforts on forest science for profound understanding on nature and human life. They pursue their beautiful and consistent goal without being bounded to cultural and national difference. From their thoughts and mind that are greener than that of others, we will be able to derive an environment-friendly solution for the future.




Ontong 12th - Jiun Bae
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