Recruiting Deserving Students

In this article, Geoffrey K. See, executive director of Choson Exchange, charts the process through which students from the DPRK might be selected. There are so many reports of negative experiences involving exchange students who underperform, lack interest or seem to have been sent based on political, rather than academic credentials.

But these "negative experiences seem strange to me when Beijing University professors have told me that their North Korean students are routinely top of their classes, in Chinese, at what is one of the most selective and competitive universities in China," he writes.

Choson Exchange has been involved in a study-abroad selection process for the last several months. Through this learning process we have found that selecting good students is possible. See writes that student selection is much like choosing investments:

  • Be Selective: Keep in mind that a bigger pool of candidates exist beyond what is often presented and ensure that candidates are chosen not just on individual merit, but also relative to competing candidates
  • Be Disciplined: Walk away from candidates that are simply not up to expectation
  • Conduct Due Diligence: There is no alternative to having people on-the-ground conducting the interviews

We hope to continue to improve our model for recruiting North Korean students and recognize the limitations CE and other organizations face in doing so.

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