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March 20, 2008

Seoul Tour Mixes Sugar with Business

Leoneda Inge '08
Knight-Bagehot Fellow
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Just around the time that jet lag was due to set in, the CBS Korean Study Tour was infused with a seemingly endless supply of sugar, courtesy of Lotte Confectionary. Our factory tour included samples of everything along the way, including chewing gum, cookies, candy, chocolate and the cutest little ice creams on a stick!

One MBA student joked, “All we need are the Oompa Loompas.” And the way we had to dress inside the factory, there was no question that WE were the Oompa Loompas.

Lotte Confectionary is just one division under the Lotte Group, which also owns the largest department store in Korea, one of the most luxurious hotels and the world’s largest indoor amusement park (we went there, too).

After a sweaty, fun day, we rushed back to the hotel to put on our best suits. It was off to Seoul City Hall to meet the mayor.

On Tuesday our whirlwind tour of the city that calls itself “The Soul of Asia” took us to Seoul National University, which is considered the premiere university in the country. We visited students in SNU’s new MBA program.

And even though we’re officially on spring break, we went back to school for a while. Former CBS professor Jaeyoung Song gave us a Samsung history lesson. It was a nice lead-in to our visit of Samsung Semiconductor, where we were brought on a short tour of its showroom (but no mention of the company’s current woes).

We wrapped up the day with CBS alumni, who treated us to a wonderful dinner at The Westin Chosun.

You’ll have to find out about all the partying and Korean karaoke when we get back!