The Dankook University Foundation (Chairman Choong-sik Chang) held a board meeting on August 23rd and appointed Professor Soo-bok Kim of the Department of Literary Creative Writing as the 18th president of Dankook University. Kim earned his bachelors, masters and doctorate degrees from Dankook’s Department of Korean Language and Literature. Since his appointment as professor in 1985, Kim has served in various posts including Associate Vice President and Vice Provost for Academic Affairs in Cheonan, Dean of the College of Arts and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost of Cheonan Campus. Externally, he has served as President of the Society of Korean Literary Creative Writing and Senior Vice President of the Society of Korean Poets and is currently Chairman of the Board at the Catholic Literary Society of Korea. His term as DKU President will be for four years, starting August 26, 2019.
The Foundation revised its Articles of Incorporation last year, changing the way the university president is selected from the previous appointment system to an indirect election where a Presidential Candidate Nomination Committee (hereinafter ‘nomination committee’) nominates candidates to the Board, which makes the final decision for designation. The nomination committee, consisting of 13 members including professors, students, faculty members and social figures, posted a notice on the president recruitment process on the university website in early July. Afterwards, three qualified candidates presented their aspirations for the university before the nomination committee.
Kim spoke highly of the achievements of his predecessor Hosung Chang’s campus specialization effort following Dankook’s campus move to Jukjeon. The efforts, focusing on the four fields of IT, CT, BT, and foreign language education, was viewed as having contributed to sharpening the university’s competitiveness and reputation. He stressed that it is now time to continue the momentum by recreating the innovative spirit of Dankook’s founder and fostering specialists who can become leaders of the reunification era. In addition, he shared his vision to build an academic community that aims to practice the values of life and opening “the Dankook renaissance” by reviving academics and arts like the House of Medici that inspired the Renaissance in medieval Europe.
Kim plans to form a ‘Smart Creative Campus’ to spark innovation in the learning environment by setting up a Smart Education Support Center and to focus on nurturing ICT engineers as well as to create a ‘K-Culture Station’ to further promote Korean popular culture during his term. He also spoke about fostering experts for inter-Korean human and academic exchanges and setting up a new International Peace Graduate School to contribute to world peace through Korea-Eurasia academic studies. The new president also expressed his wishes to make the campus a venue for learning, not only for current students but also for foreign students, foreign workers, office workers and public servants and declared to place top priority on customer satisfaction. Kim hopes to build on the noblesse oblige mindset of Dankook’s founder and further advance this by integrating projects sponsoring the university and establishing a donors’ park to reduce dependency on student tuition. His development plans also include building a health community alongside the university hospital and relevant academic departments to serve as a strong support for the entire Dankook family.