Sejin Um

Sejin Um is a second-year MA student at the Social Justice Institute and member of EDGES.

Research interests: Work and organizations; gender; family; education; social movements

Prior to joining the MA program, she worked in the private sector for three years, and the work experience there strengthened her passion for feminist research and activism. She has been part of the millennial feminist movement in South Korea since 2015, both on-line and off-line, studying feminist theories and organizing various events, marches and protests with multiple organizations and groups. She continues to be engaged in the women’s movement in South Korea and is also currently involved in feminist communities in Vancouver, Canada. She holds a BA in International Studies and Law and Public Administration from Korea University (2014).

Her current MA thesis project is a study of why and how young women make the decision to leave ‘good jobs’ in the context of the gap between high levels of women’s educational attainment and gender inequality in the labor market and workplace. Analyzing in-depth interviews with women (and men) who worked and resigned from full-time positions in conglomerate firms in South Korea, Sejin examines how they interact with the hyper-masculinized and militarized work culture and how their work expectations and experiences eventually shape the decision to exit the organization. This study interrogates the gendered workplace norms and culture of Korean business conglomerates, women’s interaction with and resistance to such work environment, and finally, what it means for women to break away from the ‘ideal life track’ and search for an alternative life.

Contact: sejinum [at] alumni [dot] ubc [dot] ca

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