Page 8 - Transformations The Diversity Academy Magazine for IU Southeast Faculty

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by Stacy Lintz
IU Southeast English major
Anyone who has ever moved away from
home has a story, especially if moving
to a different country. I am from South
Korea. I did not develop a racial identity
there or suffer prejudice because we are
racially homogenous: we all look alike.
For us, cultural diversity is based on
socio-economic status, religion, sexuality,
or ethnicity. I had to become a racial
minority in America to identify myself as
a racial being.
Although my parents had two daughters,
Korean tradition values sons; not having
one is a handicap, where the first-born
son is expected to take care of parents in
later life. I remember my grandparents
often telling me, “You should have
been a boy!” This bias was the earliest
shaping force in my diversity awareness
that would become a driving passion in
later educational experiences. I came to
realize that I owed my higher education
both to my parents’ valuing education
for my sister and me and to their socio-
economic privilege.
In Korea, women who earn a master’s
degree are expected to become nurses
or teachers, not to pursue doctorates.
Seonmin Huh in her office at IU Southeast