The East Asian Languages and Literatures Department’s Korean program offers a major and a minor, both designed to equip students with oral and written proficiency in Korean and a deep understanding of Korean heritage. Many students in the Korean program study related fields including art history, business, fine arts, international affairs, religion and women’s, gender and sexuality studies. Our alumni have chosen careers and graduate study in fields including diplomatic service, international business, intelligence, defense, journalism, law and medicine.
The Korean program receives generous support from the Young-Key Kim-Renaud Fund for Korean Language and Literature. The fund has made possible many endeavors to support students and scholars of Korean arts and culture, including the annual Hahn Moo-Sook Colloquium series and the Kim-Renaud East Asian Humanities Lecture Series. Learn more about the colloquium and lecture series on our News and Events page.
Why Study Korean?
The Korean culture industry — K-pop, K-drama, films and television shows — has exploded onto the global stage, gaining recognition around the world. Alongside its popular culture, the geopolitical significance of Korea's strong economy and international relations with its neighbors (particularly with North Korea) calls for educated members of the workforce who understand the language, history and culture of the country and its people.
The Sejong Scholarship provides a partial tuition scholarship to a GW student enrolled in a Korean language, literature or culture class. It is funded by an endowment created with a gift from Prof. Young-Key Kim-Renaud.
The Korean Language and Culture Student Prize, made possible with a fund donated by Prof. Young-Key Kim-Renaud, awards $500 to one student each year in a GW Korean course. Applicants must satisfy Korean language course requirements and submit a scholarly paper written in English about a Korea-related topic.
The GW Libraries Global Resources Center houses a collection of materials tailored to the needs of researchers who are interested in the current affairs, politics, economy, culture, foreign relations and national security of Korea. Many of the resources — which include video tutorials, poetry and folktales, grammar guides and more — are available in digital format.
The mission of the GW Institute for Korean Studies (GWIKS) at the Elliott School of International Affairs is to consolidate, strengthen and grow the existing Korean studies program at GW and in the greater Washington, D.C. area. The institute offers a lecture series, an annual signature conference and other seminars, and it also provides support for the EALL Department's popular Hahn Moo-Sook Colloquium in the Humanities.