After the success of 2022, once again this year in South Korea, a student was an Ambassador for a day. Thanks to the “Ambassador for a Day” initiative, organised by the Italian Embassy in Seoul to promote gender equality, the selected student experienced a typical day as an “Ambassador”, working alongside the Italian Ambassador in Seoul, Federico Failla, in his activities on the International Women’s Day.
The project stems from the need to adopt proactive policies to achieve Goal 5 of the UN 2030 Agenda on gender equality. Since 2022 the Italian Embassy has held a competition for female students from Korean universities from all over the country. This year the young university students have been asked to write a short essay entitled “How breaking the glass ceiling can help contribute to peace and security around the world”, a topic that draws on the numerous studies that show the existence of a negative correlation between gender equality and armed conflict. The chosen theme is also highly topical in the light of today’s particular international geopolitical situation. The final medium-term objective of the initiative is to encourage greater participation of women in the top ranks of the labour world, thanks to a direct exchange of views with personalities from the political, institutional, economic and cultural world.
“Ambassador for a Day” is one of the concrete contributions that the Italian Embassy in Seoul provides to foster women’s empowerment and remove obstacles to gender equality. Ambassador Failla stated: “I strongly believe in this initiative. For the female students involved, having a first-hand experience of the working life of an Ambassador and interacting with top representatives of the institutional, scientific, cultural and entrepreneurial world can be an incentive to higher career aspirations. Moreover, based on my own experience, I can say that collaboration between the various elements that make up society is an added value for everyone. This is the point underlying the theme chosen for this year: if fairer societies can contribute to a more lasting and effective maintenance of peace, I believe this is a value to be defended. Congratulations again to the winner and see you next year!”
Among the many meetings attended by the winner there was one with Deputy Minister and Ambassador for Climate Change Kim Hyeoun of the Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs. There were also high-profile meetings on the subject of bilateral Italy-Korea relations, on the subject of science and technology and in the commercial sphere, as well as a meeting with the Design Ambassador for South Korea in view of the Italian Design Day. A video call was also organized on the theme of equal opportunities in relation to the diplomatic career with the Vice President of the Association of Italian Diplomatic Women and Executives (DID), Silvia Costantini. Finally, at the staff meeting, the winner delved into the activities of the Military Attaché Office and of the Italian Cultural Institute.