Congratulations to KONNECT for being selected as UCI’s Club of the Month!
1) What sets you apart from other organizations?
Konnect: Korean Cultural Awareness Group is unique in that it is the only Korean cultural awareness group on campus. The organization strives to fulfill its mission through cultural programming. This stems largely from the fact that Konnect was founded in order to create and sustain the first annual Korean Culture Night on campus, but since then it has expanded in order to encompass a more well-rounded set of activities. Additionally, Konnect is able to provide a comfortable setting for people of all backgrounds and interests to come together at Konnect, whether it's K-Pop, hiphop through Urban Motus, Korean food and fashion, and etc.; because of this, Konnect boast a diverse membership
2) More recently, what has Konnect accomplished?
Konnect's greatest accomplishments have been Korean Culture Night, KFEST: Korean Heritage Festival, and just the fact that it is in its second year and that the legacy will continue for future years. Konnect was founded to create KCN, but from the beginning the founders of Konnect and KCN wanted it to be a project that ultimately found ownership and pride through collaboration with the entire Korean/Korean-American community on campus. Collaboration is very important for Konnect, so we feel that it is great that KCN has been such a success and will continue to be. KFEST: Korean Heritage Festival was also a huge success, with 250 - 300 people passing through the event for the first annual festival this year. Konnect collaborated for the first time with the Korean Student Organization and we're extremely glad that we had the chance to connect further with the individuals in our community that we don't often have contact with.
Also, Konnect is a young club - it's been only two years and already we've been solidifying a foundation for the organization. Konnect was met with resistance from its own community in Los Angeles because of very different understandings of the needs of the Korean-American community. Konnect struggled with this but now the organization has been able to really differentiate itself from the other Korean/American clubs on campus while building community with them through these programs and events.
3) What's in the future for Konnect?
Konnect is really looking to provide a welcoming space for Korean-Americans and those who are interested in Korean culture. Konnect has so much space to grow and develop, so the possibilities are endless. Hopefully when students from this year are able to come back to UC Irvine ten years from now, Konnect will continue to exist and also thrive on campus amongst the Korean-American but also the Asian Pacific Islander community.
4) How does someone get involved with your organization & how many members do you have?
All you need to do is show up to our meetings every Wednesday at 7PM, in the Cross-Cultural Center, Dr. White Room (across Starbucks). Membership is needed for particular benefits like joining our dance teams (K-Pop and Urban Motus), but otherwise anyone should feel free to come out and have fun with us! We have approximately 50 - 60 official members.