On June 12, IVECA partners from India and South Korea joined together for their Live Class, presenting about inequalities in their countries. Based on their observations and research focused on their home countries, groups introduced inequalities in each of their communities. The opportunity to become aware of community issues brings new knowledge of global citizenship and empathy for the world around them. Students from both countries acknowledged the importance of education to solve common types of inequalities.
Students recognized income inequalities in their societies as a principal topic to research. The educational opportunities in rural areas often fall short, which directly contributes to the inequalities presented. A student from India explained, “Educational infrastructure is distributed unequally between rural and urban areas. Students in rural areas suffer from scarcity and inadequate accessibility of schools, as well as the poor quality of education, and are forced to travel large distances.” Caste inequality, which refers to the unequal distribution of wealth and income among citizens, affects the rights of an estimated 260 million people worldwide. For India, many of those affected by caste inequalities live in rural areas without access to education.
Similarly, in South Korea, medical inequalities are widened due to the lack of education and access to health care technology. The COVID-19 pandemic shed light on the widening gap between regions to medical care. A student announced, “This affected the activities of people living, learning, and working. This affected social safety and caused a health gap with races and ethnicities.” Both groups of IVECA partners researched racism, gender, age, and religious inequalities. Lack of education affects how people are treated by others in their communities by limiting people’s exposure to different cultures and opportunities to explore new environments.
Concluding the Live Class, a South Korean student read, “Thank you for sharing your views on inequality and showing examples from your country. It was an eye-opening experience to learn about people who grew up in a different social environment from us.” With a new perspective learned from each other, students are empowered to educate themselves, others, and create changes starting at home.