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Indian Institute of Technology Madras
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Where is Indian Institute of Technology Madras?

           Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IITM) is the best Indian engineering college; there are sixteen Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) campuses across India. Nine campuses, including IITM, are among the most famous universities. IITM is located in the city of Chennai in the southeastern part of India. The university campus is eight times biggerthan the Seoul campus of Chung-Ang University.

About Chennai

           Chennai is located in the South-East region. This place is the main city in the state of Tamil Nadu and is a port city. Chennai's old name was Madras, which his located along the Coromandel Coast. The population is close to 3,841,000 people, and the cityexports cotton, leather, chrome ore, and vegetable oil from its artificial harbor. Moreover, this city developed the industries of leather, cotton, and chemicals, in addition to being a center for the rail, culture, and commercial industries.

 

Interview with Lee Guen-hee

(Department of Computer Engineering)

CAH: Did you have any special reason to enter Indian Institute of Technology Madras as an exchange student?

Lee: I actually wanted to go a university in the English speaking-world, but I received a low iBT TOEFL score and comparative credits. So, I after learning that India designated English as common language while I was looking for European or Asian universities as a second best plan, I applied for IIT with the thought that this is a good chance to learn English after discovering IIT delivers every lecture in English.    

CAH: What was your hardest part in your school life? Did you have any particular way to overcome the experience?

Lee: In my case, I suffered breakbone fever for two weeks after becoming infected by a mosquito. I also got sick frequently, including having Traveler's Diarrhea from the local food. However, there was no pharmacy nearby, and the quality of medicine was a doubtful level. Above all, it was very sad that I had to overcome the disease alone without my family. But, I could recover completely thanks to other exchange students who were worried about me and were helpful. When you go overseas, first of all, it is really helpful if you prepare different kinds of medicines. In India, finding good medicine is difficult. Medicine to treat diarrhea is most necessary. There is no vaccination or medicine for Dengue (breakbone fever) yet, so the best way to avoid it is to not get bitten. You can get mosquito repellent in India easily.

 

CAH: You said that we need to prepare a bicycle to go around school. What does that mean?

Lee: One of IITM's prized features is its wide-sized campus. The school bus enters the campus, but its operating time is very irregular, and there are too many people taking the bus. So, if you purchase a bicycle in India, you can enjoy a convenient and free campus life. In the early semester, a bicycle discount event opens on campus. Of course, you can resell your bicycle to other students for 60%~70% of the purchase price in the school garage community at the end of semester. Every place of the campus is very beautiful because the university is decorated by a forest-like jungle where wild animals live, such as deer and monkeys. So, looking around the campus using your bicycle is one of the big pleasures. In addition, bicycles are useful when you have to go off campus to a restaurant or grocery store and to enjoy various aspects of cultural life.       

 

CAH: We knew you traveled the whole of India for about two month. We think that it was not easy leaving school to travel throughout India. Is there a special motive for doing it?

           After I finished my freshman year and left school, I traveled to Nepal and Bangladesh. I had only seen India briefly by passing through a land road. It was all I had experienced about India. Despite just a brief three days, I was attracted to something. So, I decided then to travel to India someday, and I later planned to go to India as an exchange student.  

CAH: Let us know the most memorable experience in your study. 

Lee: When I was taking a lecture called “The Indian Literature and Life," I learned about an Indian poet named Rabindranāth Tagore, who was the first Asian winner of a Nobel Prize in Literature. He contributed his poem,“ The Lamp of the East,” to Korea, which was suffering a hard period during the Japanese Colonial Era. The professor especially mentioned this poem for me. As an exchange student from Korea, I was impressed by the contents of the poem.

 

CAH: Can you express this exchange student experience in one sentence? And why? 

Lee: ”Om Mani Padme.“ This is Buddhist term. It literally means, “A lotus flower blooms in the mud.“ I thought it was just onomatopoeia that Gung Ye used to say in The First King, Wang Geon,” but I got to know this sentence has a profound meaning after visiting the Tibetan refugee government during this time. I consider that this sentence explains my experience of being an exchange student very well. I was sick in a strange environment, there were misunderstandings with the local students, and there were so many uncomfortable sufferings on the trip. But, I broadened my view and now have a more independent mind through these experiences. So, I became a grown man.   

Qualifications to Apply: One original copy of report card in English, one original copy of TOEFL transcript, one application form, eight passport photos, an English medical report

 

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