10. Alcohol is strictly prohibited. This includes drinking alcohol
and/or being in possession of any alcohol.
And from the section on what will get you expelled from the orientation:
If one of the following situations should occur, you will be expelled from the orientation and your school will be notified:
1. If your attendance at the orientation is negligent.
2. If you do not adhere to the GEPIK Orientation Guidelines or the
3. If you drink alcohol and/or are caught in possession of any
4. If you are found gambling or engaging in any type of
violence/abuse/loose conduct and/or behavior.
5. If you do not follow the instructions required for the orientation
Anecdotal evidence from blogs and forums like Dave's ESL Cafe tells us that drinking is a notorious part of the GEPIK orientation process. It even made the Korean press---always on the look out for news, rumors, or, um, anecdotal evidence of foreign teachers behaving badly) last fall in a NewsDaily article "원어민 교사들에 술판으로 한국 문화 소개?" ("Native speaker English teachers introduced to Korean culture through drinking parties?") A brief look at the article is available at this Gusts of Popular Feeling post, which looks at the misinformation and incorrect statistics that inform yellow journalism on the NSET front; an excerpt from the aforementioned article:
The article begins with the exciting phrase "A crack in the management of the Gyeonggi Education Office's adaptation program for native speaking teachers has been exposed." It then reveals that the Facebook pages and blogs of teachers who attended GEPIK orientation reveal that drinking parties were going on during orientation. Teachers are quoted from their blogs saying that orientation reminded them of university or that they wanted to die. GEPIK officials express shock and promise to get to the bottom of things, tighten up management of the program, and prevent future outrages.
From there the reporter uses another online source - a community of Korean English teachers, especially part-time English instructors working on contract in public schools. Miss Hwang (28), a member of the online community working at an elementary school in Ansan, reveals that "I've been driven to the edge by the insincere attitude towards work that the native speaking English teacher has."
While attendees are all of legal drinking age, and while alcohol is a noticable part of both Korean society and of the school experience, a ban is probably for the best. A drunken frat-party after-hours shouldn't be included in an introduction to teaching in Korea, and it sounds like at least a few teachers need that reminder. One poster from that Waygook.org thread:
Doesn't surprise me. Last year it was embarrassing to see all the garbage that people left all over the campus. Not to mention some idiots who started drinking at 8:00am. One guy in my seminar had to be removed because he started rambling incoherently in the middle of a lecture. The yearly orientation is a perfect example of why Koreans think all NETs are drunken morons.
[W]hen I went in 2009, it was nothing but three days of partying. It was rather gross seeing everybody getting sick and puking on everything. Even the staff members were plastered and had poor behavior. I think it is good to ban alcohol. It shouldn't be a big party. It needs to be oreintation. Anybody who complains about there being no booze or bars to go to are just being childish.
For programs for the upcoming orientation see this YBM post, and for other notices and information see this one. The 25th to 27th will be for elementary-school teachers, while the 27th to 29th will be for secondary-school teachers.