Barry Ching Hong Hui is an international student from Hong Kong who is currently studying journalism at Green River College. After completing his Associate in Arts degree he plans to transfer to the University of British Columbia and pursue a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication.
Barry took 2019-20 Asian Studies Fellow Michelle Marshman‘s revised course, HS 231 Modern Asia in Fall 2020. He spoke to the East Asia Center about key insights from his experience, and why it’s important for students to learn about contemporary issues in East Asia from different media sources.
How did Modern Asia differ to others you’ve taken before? What has been the biggest insight or ‘wow’ moment in taking this course?
Modern Asia is a complicated subject, and it’s important for more people to understand this history. I definitely felt surprised about the many places we studied in this class. I expected to learn just the basics of Asia, like Japan, Korea, and India. However, I also studied current issues from Central Asia. For instance, I learned about challenges in health care and employment in short films made by Afghan cinema students.
Are there any assignments you can tell us about? In what way were they valuable learning experiences?
Yes, one thing that stood out was our film discussion about Taxi Driver. In terms of its content, it was a valuable learning experience that provided a deeper look into more recent South Korean history.
Also, I was glad that Hong Kong and Taiwan were studied, including via a documentary on the inhuman and cruel police treatment of students in the Chinese University of Hong Kong and the Hong Kong Polytechnic University.
Why do you think it is important for students at Green River College to be given more opportunities to develop competencies in Asian Studies, Global Learning and international exchange?
Due to globalization, I absolutely believe that it is important for students at Green River to be given more opportunities to develop competencies Asian Studies. Each country has its own strengths and differences, so learning about other countries and parts of the world can develop a better society as a whole.
Interview conducted December 2020.