PoketUniv, the Essential Platform for College Students’ Schedule
Having trouble o r g a n i z i n g y o u r c o l l e g e s c h e d u l e s ? Then, “Poket Univ” may be a solution for y o u . We m e t the founder of PoketUniv, Choi Sang-il, a Graduate in the Department of Electronic Engineering.
Q. Can you introduce platform PoketUniv and the motive of the foundation?
A. PoketUniv is an information-sharing platform for university students. We provide college students with functions such as class communication rooms and schedulers. It is a service that shares all central information needed for college school life linked with classes and majors. PoketUniv is a combination of “Pocket” and “University”. It means to put your college life in a pocket. The launch of the service was a realization of students’ desires to put every college life into stable management.
Q. What are the strengths of the PoketUniv platform? Are there any supplements to be made?
A. The strength of PoketUniv is that it provides a network for college students. The service is based on students’ majors. Additionally, linkage is made on “courses” which makes the application meaningful. Moreover, college students all over the country come together and make meaningful exchanges. Unlike services for college students that offer absolute anonymity, users on PoketUniv are given nicknames. Therefore, the platform pursues sound exchanges. Improvements that we seek are mostly related to attracting new users. At the moment, there aren’t many users. If more useful information is accumulated and provided, more valuable exchanges will be available.
Q. What would be PoketUniv’s shortterm and long-term goals?
A. In the short run, gathering data is most important. We are currently organizing information on diverse majors. Until now, students had limited accessibility to such data. We want to make linkages between users based on each individuals’ characteristics and thus, enable an exchange of a variety of information. In the long-term, we want to provide a curating service that offers personalized information to students. Based on each individuals’ credits, majors and interests, I want to provide customized resources. I believe this will assist every aspect of college life.
Q. Is there advice for students who are interested in launching online platforms?
A. It’s impossible to establish a business in a blink. For me, it took six months of preparation. Especially, listening to foundation related courses, participating in club activities, and participating in diverse meetings helped a lot. Opportunities are given to everyone, but only those who are prepared can claim them.
Making the Most Out of Extracurricular Activities
I n t e r e s t e d i n extracurricular activities? It is very difficult to find the right a c t i v i t y a n d make significant p r o g r e s s . Lee Yoonki, Class of 17 in the School of International Studies (SIS) at Hanyang University(HYU) received the Hanyang Student Achievement award. His recent achievements include but are not limited to, winning the grand prize at both the Model European Union (MEU2020) and Korea National Diplomatic Academy (KNDA) Model United Nations (MUN).
Q. Can you illustrate the details of the former two MUNs of which you proved significance?
A. The MEU2020 was a simulation of the Council of the European Union conference. We drafted the EU position for the 2021 Climate Change Conference (COP26). Meanwhile, the KNDA MUN was part of the KNDA diplomacy workshop for college students. Its intentions were to help students learn more about South Korean diplomacy and foreign policy.
Q. Do you have any tips on finding the adequate activities that fit yourself?
A. First, it is important to know what you are truly passionate about. There are so many different types of extracurricular activities and student clubs related to a wide range of topics. Once you narrow down your interests, you can easily find promotions for different activities on the university website.
Q. MUN seems to be your area of specialty. Do you have any advice when participating in them?
A . F o r M U N , I w o u l d s a y t h a t preparation is the most important thing. I tend to spend a lot of time doing research beforehand to gain a better understanding of the theme or subject of discussion. Next, I go over possible scenarios with my teammates so that we can prepare for any counterarguments or rebuttals. Finally, I always ask myself: “How can I contribute to the international community and bring something to the table?” This mindset has helped me to think of creative solutions to tackle global challenges during the conference.
Q. Is there any advice you want to give to students who want to actively p a r t i c i p a t e i n e x t r a c u r r i c u l a r activities?
A. Don’t be afraid to try new things. Taking a challenge is always daunting. However, here is the golden rule: If it doesn’t challenge you, it won’t change you for the better. Moreover, one of the biggest takeaways of participating in extracurricular activities is being able to meet and network with many talented and motivated students. Focusing on your academics is definitely an important task as a student. Though, I do want to emphasize the unimaginable benefits that can be achieved from activities slightly different from mandatory tasks.
The Renaissance of Biotechnology: Digging into Human DNA
O n O c t o b e r 7, 2021, Bae S a n g - s u , a P r o f e s s o r i n the Department of Chemistry a t H a n y a n g U n i v e r s i t y ( H Y U ) , announced that his joint research team has discovered a new principle for a DNA Base Editor. An improved form of Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR) genetic scissors free from any chromosome depletion has been created. From their previous research conducted in 2019, they conceived the fact that Adenine Base Editor (ABE), one of the DNA Base Editors, had an error in substituting four bases of human DNA (Adenine, Guanine, Thymine, and Cytosine). This time, they came up with ‘Precise Adenine Base Editor Without Cytosine Catalysis’ by applying a rational design method to Adenosine Deaminase.
Q. What is the significance of the research results?
A. The existing CRISPR genetic scissors and ABE are known to have endless possibilities. They can be used for animals and plants to create new variants, or for humans to correct wrong genes. At this point, there are a few errors in terms of human gene correction therapy. Therefore, the creation of a more sophisticated version of ‘Precise Adenine Base Editor Without Cytosine Catalysis’ enhances safety in future applications to human genes.
Q . H a v e y o u e x p e r i e n c e d a n y difficulties as a researcher? If so, how did you overcome them?
A. Although our team realized that a rational design method is necessary to transform Adenosine Deaminase, this could not have been done with our own strength. Such deficiency could be solved with the help of Woo Jae-sung and his team, a Professor in the School of Life Sciences and Biotechnology at Korea University.
Q. Do you have any visions or goals that you want to achieve in the future?
A. There are two main goals that I want to achieve. The first is to find and solve the problems of the existing genetic scissors technology. Secondly, i would like to apply the ‘Precise Adenine Base Editor Without Cytosine Catalysis’ to actual patients and try human gene correction therapy. This process would require cooperation with clinicians in the hospital.
Q. Is there anything that you would like to say to the students at HYU who are interested in biochemistry?
A. This era seems to be the Renaissance in the fields of biotechnology and medicine. Especially, humans can freely change DNA, which was thought to be the realm of God. Various innovative changes are taking place, such as diagnosing diseases with a drop of blood or transplanting artificial organs. I hope students at HYU could actively enter these fields and become the leaders of research and development.