Making Movies From Afar

This School of the Arts film student is based in Seoul and working hard to stay connected with her community in New York.

Yukyoung Lee
January 20, 2021

This is part of a Columbia News series, titled Postcards, which invites members of the Columbia community who are living and teaching or studying abroad to send us updates on where they are, what they miss about not being on campus, and how they are making the most of their situation during this global pandemic.

I’m a second-year creative producing student in the film program at the School of the Arts, writing from Seoul. Filmmaking is all about collaboration, and ever since the outbreak of the pandemic, I haven’t been able to see my fellow classmates and shoot films in person. Not only do I miss New York, I miss the excitement and valuable experience of being on set with people who share the same passion in our chosen field. Not to mention the time difference and remote learning setting, all of which make it hard to participate in class and be present for the many events organized by the school.

A woman with dark hair and a white shirt works at a laptop on a wooden surface.

Despite the drawbacks of online learning, I’ve been able to get over my homesickness for New York after relocating to Korea. Most public areas in Seoul remain open, so I can visit restaurants, which are just not the same as those in New York’s K-town. I’ve also had the chance to travel locally with my family to lesser-known parts of Korea. Because I’ve been in the workforce since finishing my undergrad degree, I haven’t had much time to spend with my family, so I’m cherishing every moment that I have with them in the midst of this pandemic.

I sometimes feel disconnected from Columbia, but I’ve been a part of the organizing committee for School of the Arts events, and I try to frequently communicate with my classmates over Zoom. I can’t wait to be back on the Morningside campus again, and meet my fellow classmates in the Dodge Hall lobby.

Yukyoung Lee is in the creative producing concentration in the School of the Arts’ film program.