SINGAPORE – Media OutReach – 11 May 2020 – With the ever-growing craze for all things Korean, Korean language schools in Singapore have been steadily feeding the nation’s K-cravings, one lesson at a time. One Korean language school in Singapore is enjoying particular success due to their emphasis on teacher selection, training, and teaching pedagogy.
This top-rated institution is none other than Sejong Korean Language School, which has recently expanded its centres from two to three in Singapore. However, founder-cum-principal Ryan Kwak Seong Hoon of the language school is not resting on his laurels just yet.
Today, Sejong Korean Language School runs three centres islandwide. Its headquarters in Tanjong Pagar sees many young working professionals for evening and night classes after work. The Jurong East satellite campus serves the West-side dwellers, while a newly launched campus in Tampines makes Korean learning accessible for those in the East. It has not been long since the opening of their third campus, but their founder is already setting his sights on even further expansion.
According to Mr Kwak, he has plans to further grow the school to meet the rising demand for Korean language courses in Singapore. As the school enters its eighth year of operations, he “still has many plans yet to execute”. One of these plans includes an upcoming Korean library within the school’s main campus at Tanjong Pagar. He hopes that the library will be a driving force to promote readership and familiarity with Korean texts amongst his students.
Labelling themselves the #1 Korean Language School in Singapore is not all just marketing hype, either. The institution’s popularity is well-backed by the numbers. Well over a thousand active students attend their classes each week, which makes Sejong Korean Language School the largest of its kind in Singapore in terms of the size of their student community.
Other notable testaments to the school’s reputation are their long list of corporate clients who trust them for providing Korean language training to their employees. Some of these corporate clients also include local banks, law firms, and our national airline.
With so many commendable achievements in such a young institution, many wonder what sparked this success. For the team at Sejong Korean Language School, they call it the “Sejong Standard”. The phrase refers to their signature teaching approach that is as systematic, structured and efficient as it is fun-filled and engaging. It seems that this tried and proven method is what attracts students to choose the Sejong brand over other course providers.
Achieving their current standards of education is not easy, especially for the teaching team at the MOE-registered private school. In fact, the institution is well-known for its stringent recruitment process when it comes to their Korean language teachers. Prospective teachers are scouted from top employment agencies and universities in South Korea, and they go through multiple rounds of interviews before only the most qualified and passionate candidates are shortlisted. New hires then have to embark on months of in-house training to get them up to mark with the “Sejong Standard” before they are allowed to commence teaching proper.
It is evident that the institution’s booming popularity is not just something they take for granted. In fact, it is hard to imagine today that this success had very humble beginnings. The Sejong Korean language school of today was the result of the passion of one young Korean man’s quest to make Korean language learning accessible in Singapore.
As a child, Mr Kwak found himself in Singapore when his family migrated here from South Korea. At first, he struggled greatly with learning, communicating, and making friends in Singapore due to his poor grasp of English. Yet, this experience only served to ingrain in him the importance of language fluency for navigating and thriving in society, and ignited his passion for language education.
In 2012, Mr Kwak started his Korean language centre as a one-man show with an 80-hour work week in a single classroom and tiny rented office. His unique background lent him the rare advantage of being able to impart Korean language skills while making it relevant to the local context of Singapore. Thanks to this distinctive edge, his classes are immensely well-received by Singaporeans here. As Mr Kwak continued to hone the structure of his teaching, the popularity of his classes grew, and Sejong Korean Language School has grown from strength to strength since then.
Looking forward, Mr Kwak believes that the demand for Korean language learning is still on the up-trend. He notes that when he first started teaching, many students were K-wave fans who were led by their interest in Korean popular media and culture. But today, a brief inspection of the student demographic of the school reveals a wide variety of backgrounds and goals, ranging from Korean enthusiasts and language lovers, to a surprisingly large number of locals learning for personal purposes such as to communicate with their Korean spouse or partner! Up to a third of the school’s students are business professionals looking to upskill themselves.
Interested individuals can get a taste of the “Sejong Standard” for themselves at one of the institution’s centres. Sejong Korean Language School offers Beginner to Further Advanced Korean language courses, including SkillsFuture claimable Korean courses.