In the next few weeks, a very important and stressful time of the students' lives is taking place. Similar to the States, individuals here wanting to get into a University must take tests, write introductory essays, and go through an interview process. Unlike nearly everyone in America, the students here have most likely never had any experience doing any of those steps. Before they came here, they went to school until tenth grade. If they wanted to go past that, they needed special permission from the government and had limited options of education.
While in their schools, they would have taken tests, but the majority of their education was likely based on knowing trivia-type facts about their 'dear' leader... memorizing his speeches, knowing his likes and dislikes, being tested on what date he gave so-and-so speech, etc.. At NKgo, there are tests every week and studying is as important as breathing. They go to classes for English, Korean, history and math- all in an effort to catch up to the rest of the Korean population entering into University this semester.
Along with teaching them scholarly information, they also get a crash course in basic interview behavior. In America, interviews start to happen for high school students as they start looking for their first job, or as they are practicing to get into a college. Our students are having to learn everything we know from experience in a matter of a few hours of verbal instruction. Needless to say, they are nervous and very stressed out!! Their nerves, however, have not put much of a damper on the silly comments and actions that I have come to love so much about them!
Friday is test day for our students. Pray for them as they continue to work as hard as they can to reach the goal of 'University', and even more that they would reach the eternal goal of knowing God and following His Son.