South Korean Sewon Lim of Miss Porter’s School in the United States wins this month’s “Decoder in the Spotlight” award for her outstanding contributions to News-Decoder.

By Nelson Graves

“Our graduates will shape a changing world.”

So proclaims Miss Porter’s School, a News-Decoder founding member located in the United States.

And so, too, will Sewon Lim go on to shape the world after she finishes her last year of studies this spring at the boarding school.

The South Korean national wins this month’s “Decoder in the Spotlight” award for her outstanding contributions to building our global community, both through her work as a student ambassador at Porter’s and in a recent webinar on women’s rights.

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Sewon Lim

The hour-long webinar featured students from both Porter’s and Westover School, also located in the U.S. state of Connecticut, as well as Leila Asrari, an expert on children’s rights and violence against girls who works at Plan International in London.

The students provided a tour d’horizon of women’s rights in five countries or regions of the world — Argentina, Eastern Europe, Japan, South Asia and Southern Africa — after Sewon introduced the session with a review of the #MeToo movement.

In a first for News-Decoder, both schools had all of their students view the live session, amplifying the message of those on camera and offering the observers a chance to ask questions.

To spur interest in the webinar, Sewon took to Twitter four days before the live session in a video. “We think it’s important for all of us to recognize that gender violence is a problem that affects all of us,” she said. She also published her thoughts on News-Decoder’s discussion board, which is reserved for students and faculty at our 14 member institutions.

As the first student speaker in the webinar, Sewon said that during an internship last year in Washington, DC, she researched the #MeToo movement and came to realize the realities that women face every day.

“The #MeToo movement has unified and empowered women of diverse groups and communities to come together and fight for what is right — ending gender violence,” she said during the webinar, before asking: “How do we tackle gender violence in regions where discrimination against women has been the norm?”

Sewon’s interest in international affairs comes naturally. A diplomat’s daughter, she has lived in Italy, Thailand, Switzerland, Ukraine and the United States, in addition to her home country.

Sewon answered some of our questions about her interests and plans.

Q: What are your main academic interests?

Sewon: At school, I love going to English class because the discussions during those classes are very diverse and relevant to current injustices and problems in our society.

Q: Your interests outside of class?

Sewon: Outside of class, I play golf. I’m also involved in various diversity clubs such as the Asian Student Alliance and International Student Advisory. I love attending diversity conferences such as the Asian American Footsteps conference or the Student Diversity Leadership Conference.

Q: What do you plan to study in college?

Sewon: In college, I plan to study business marketing or advertising with an international focus.

Q: Have you been admitted to college yet, and if so, do you know where you’ll be going?

Sewon: I’ve been admitted to USC, but I will be attending a college in Korea.

Q: Do you have any ideas about what you’d like to do as a career?

Sewon: I would love to work in the marketing group of a company or in a media group that creates advertisements for different companies.

Q: Have you found News-Decoder to be useful, and if so, how?

Sewon: I think News-Decoder allowed me to discover to what extent I can be a part of a global world. I have found myself expanding my connections and deeply investing myself into something I found myself passionate about.

Q: What do you consider to be the world’s biggest problem right now?

Sewon: I think micro-aggressions and the biased education and culture full of stereo-types around the world.

Q: Anything else you’d like to say?

Sewon: I have been so happy to be the first News-Decoder ambassador. I hope through being part of News-Decoder, every ambassador, every student involved, finds some interest in trying to solve global issues and enjoys the experience of being part of global discussions and webinars.

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