Life-changing role in Korean social media ‘silent Antarctica’

Scores of students who were made to isolate themselves from the outside world while on an overseas student course have described the experience as “surreal” and “life-changing”.

Around 50 students from Dundee University’s Marine and Plastics Engineering programme in South Korea have been forced to steer clear of restaurants, shops, escorts incall apartments and other places where they have been spotted or photographed.

Their profile updates were being carried on Instagram and Facebook by more than 500 friends and family members back home in Scotland.

A Facebook post praising the students following their trip

Students Hannah Wellcome, James Magee and Erin Aitken all shared their experiences on social media, describing the experience as “horrible” at times.

READ MORE: Why were 50 of the best university students in the world banished from the UK?

But the trip is widely being viewed as beneficial, with many of the males posting pictures of them with female escorts that they had been partying with.

James Magee described the isolation as “life-changing”, adding that it had “force fed a lot of empathy”, while Erin Aitken said she had learned a lot from the experience and was now ready to teach it back to Dundee’s “music students”.

Hannah Wellcome described the experience as “surreal”, but said: “Not only was I able to bond with others through this, I also enjoyed one of the most memorable forms of socialising at university – going to discos and gigs.”

The image made its way around social media, including Instagram. (Facebook/Thomas Newby)

Glasgow University student Thomas Newby shared a picture on Facebook of a message he had written to his friends’ homeland in response to the piece on the “silent Antarctica”, writing: “As someone who loves playing instruments, would love to set up jam sessions for all of you (and really hope you enjoy them).”

The students originally landed in Dusseldorf, where they spent 10 days visiting factories, parks and train stations before heading to Anseong city to discover a culture more akin to a “science fair” than a city.

“It was an incredibly social city and really connected us with local people and involved our whole group taking part in activities,” one student told the Courier.