Original article in Korean is at this link.

In the future, you may wind up reading articles written by student journalists in a joint project. Student journalists, unable to freely meet and communicate, were unable work together and complete whatever journalistic feat they desired. From those difficult times to now, joint projects allow student journalists, who don’t know adult journalists, to report on the student society that older people don’t know about.

This is the story about what happened to a group of teenaged student journalists last August. They were teen mothers and North Korean escapees, normally ostracized at school. That shows the advantages of student journalists. When they pretended I was their news source they asked me all sorts of questions about specific situations and emotions, but when they interviewed their peers they were much more easily able to make empathic connections.

In fact, this reporter saw that, being of the same age group, they could show things that I could not since I lack the same understanding. Teen moms have dreams and go to hagwons to study for the university entrance exams, for instance.

They have a multitude of stories to tell about their completely different lives, despite being of the same age or gender. When interviewing someone placed into difficult circumstances, rather than reacting with pity they simply continued to inquire, “how did this happen to you?” and showed a true journalistic ebility to draw out the difficult aspects of a story.

When it comes to diverse issues such as the experiences of teen mothers in the classroom, social support for teen mothers, the problems of superficial sex education, and the stories of teens from North Korea, I was deeply impressed with the student journalists’ abilities to express their points of view.

Stories written by student journalists and adult journalists may be different, but adult journalists have a strong tendency to focus on one truth and focus on that one to the exclusion of others. In my case, I wrote on article focusing on the limits placed on teen mothers in the classroom. This is due to the fact that full educational rights are not provided to them in the schools, and this is the greatest harm done to teenage mothers. Furthermore, they say, another problem is the very small amount of independence-promotion money they have, which prevents them from going to hagwons.