The young woman pictured above is Minha Lee, a native of Korea and a YJI alum.
We first met Minha in 2004 when she was a young teenager growing up in Minnesota, looking for a place to write. We even had the pleasure of meeting her whole family one summer when their travels brought them to the U.S. East Coast.
Minha's time as a YJI writer spanned five years, but our friendship didn't end with her last piece, which I am featuring today.
Born in Seoul, she spent her early years in Korea, Romania and Ukraine before moving to the United States at age 11. Minha spent her teen years in Minnesota and is currently an art student at the prestigious Pratt Institute in New York City.
She returned to Korea for a visit a few years ago and saw her country with fresh eyes. She shared her observations and thoughts with YJI's readers in a package of stories that touched on the nation's language, its love of soju, the busy commercial side of the country and her own family's history.
She also offered some advice on correcting self-absorbed American teens by having them spend a month in Korean schools.