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Chinese and Korean students in the West Chinese and Korean students in the West
by Joseph Gatt
2021-03-19 10:11:39
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I'll attempt to give a somewhat comprehensive anthropological survey of Chinese and Korean students in Western countries like the UK, the USA, Canada or France, and of course Australia and New Zealand. That's where you'll find the majority of Chinese and Korean students.

First off, while some view Korean and Chinese students as a threat to security and intellectual property theft, most students are not.

There are roughly three categories of Korean and Chinese students in the West. There are those who were born in Western countries and spent pretty much their whole lives in the Western countries and went to local schools.

unvr001_400Then you have those Chinese and Korean students who arrived in Western countries as teenagers, perhaps spent a couple of years in Western high schools before heading to college.

Then you have those who studied in Chinese and Korean high schools and eventually moved to Western countries for college and grad school.

Chinese and Korean students tend to study hard for tests, especially standardized, multiple-choice type tests. And they tend to get high scores at those, which usually helps them land spots in decent colleges.

Korea and China also tend to prepare society for college when Western countries don't. Korea and China knows that to gain admission in college you need good grades, good test scores, and a few life experiences that will be taken into account, such as publishing, internships, volunteering, Church attendance and a few awards and a few leadership roles.

That's why many Korean and Chinese students collecting awards and leadership roles when there was no contest or no leadership event. That is in Korea and China it's pretty easy to get “certificates of attendance” without attending any event, and trophies when there was no tournament.

So Chinese and Korean students tend to be a lot “cleaner” when they hand in “clean” college and grad school applications. I remember applying to American grad schools back in 2009. My applications were rather messy, and I made a lot of claims that I did not back up with certificates (although they were true claims).

The Koreans and Chinese however tend to have their college and grad school applications reviewed by professionals, very clean, easy to read, with copies of certificates and awards cleanly provided, and “fake” letters of recommendation clearly provided.

Korea and China believe in “racial radiance” and many tell me that they want to become the “Jews of the world” that is a population showered with awards and praise and with long lists of important celebrities.

With that goal in mind, many Korean and Chinese students try hard to become doctors and lawyers. Not to make important medical discoveries or to become respected legal scholars. But to earn the title, paycheck that goes with it and the respect that comes with it.

That is in China and Korea what you know, what books you've read, what problems you've solved, how many lives you've saved is not important.

College and grad school degrees are the equivalent of the General's stars you wear on your shoulder. A Harvard or Yale degree grants you the rank equivalent of that of a three-star General. That is it doesn't matter how you got to become a General, how many battles you've won or how you earned the rank. People follow your orders without talking back or asking questions because you have the three stars on your shoulder. Same goes for MIT, Caltech, Columbia or Cornell degrees.

So a lot of Chinese and Korean students hire essay writers to write their college essays, and even have secret essay banks in Chinese and Korean websites that are not tracked by Google (often because you need an ID and password to access the essay bank). And the essay bank is full of US-college type essays, term papers, and even theses and dissertations that you can use and claim authorship for, without being detected by Western plagiarism software.

I'm surprised that so far there has been no scandal involving two Chinese students or two Korean students, studying at different universities, who never met, yet who handed in the exact same, word-for-word Ph.D. dissertation.

Korean and Chinese students tend to be quiet students in class, although they tend to show up for class and have perfect attendance records. But, a common practice is to get fake doctor's notes claiming all kinds of health problems that justify absences. Such notes are usually handed when Korean or Chinese students sense that a professor is detecting the fraud, or that the Western professor is pushing them a bit too hard to talk in class.

The problem is while Chinese and Korean students prepare very well for multiple-choice type tests; their concrete knowledge of academia tends to be very limited. They can memorize a paper about technology or social structures, but they usually can't really understand it.

However, academic theft is very, very common. It starts with my MA thesis adviser who basically copied my thesis and my friend's thesis, published it in a journal, and I supposed he received a decent grant for that. I've been told it's not just one paper he handed paraphrasing my thesis and my friend's thesis.

Project theft is also quite common. In computer science of engineering, the Chinese or Korean student is going to ask to “look at a project” or “look at code” and shamelessly claim authorship of the project or code. Some professors don't detect the fraud. Others detect the fraud and blame it on the Chinese or Korean student. Other professors, often professors who believe in Asian stereotypes about science, accuse the “White” (I use White as an example) dude for stealing the Chinese kid's project.

Then of course there are quite a few Chinese and Korean moles of their respective governments. The students usually meet with staff from the consulate or embassy (notice that China and Korea has big consulates in most prestigious university towns) and the consulate or embassy staff will ask them to hand classified projects or code or papers that the consulate staff can then sell to Chinese or Korean companies.

Problem is those projects are classified for a reason: either they are dangerous and can be used in dangerous ways, or they are protected by copyright or patents and can only be used by one company, and are available to students for reference.

Chinese and Korean consulates can also order students to go around American or Australian companies, introducing themselves as students or researchers, claiming to need technology or business models for their research, only to give away the technology or business model to competing Korean or Chinese companies, via the embassy or consulate.

But then you have those students who do try their best, write their own papers, focus on getting the degree and heading to the job market. Some students try hard to stay in Western countries after graduation and hope to get a job and work their entire careers in Western countries, while others go back to China or Korea to work for local companies.

Western degrees, especially American degrees used to be highly valued, and used to get you good positions in China and Korea at major companies. But, as of 2020, American and Australian degrees are a dime a dozen, and graduate unemployment and underemployment rates are incredibly high.

Problem is: American tuition fees are expensive, and the kids' parents often borrowed huge sums of money to pay for the American degree. Now the parents are hiding from creditors and torturing their kids for failing to get a high-paying job that can repay the debt. That's a social problem the press rarely mentions.

Problem is: parents often don't tell their kids that they borrowed huge sums of money to pay for their pricy American education. Parents usually imply that they have the money. This leads to complicated situations where Chinese and Korean parents put huge pressure on the kids to get rich quick, and no salary is good enough. That can lead to suicide, torture, bullying, harassment, or college grads joining organized crime groups to make a quick buck that satisfies the parents.

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