Dental News - Penn receives US$7.5 million to support Korean Studies Program

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Penn receives US$7.5 million to support Korean Studies Program

SNU President Yeon-Cheon Oh (left) and Penn President Amy Gutmann sign a memorandum of understanding between Penn and Seoul National University. (DTI/Photo courtesy of University of Pennsylvania)

Tue. 14 June 2011


PHILADELPHIA, PA, USA: University of Pennsylvania (Penn) President Amy Gutmann announced a US$7.5 million gift from alumni in support of Penn’s Korean Studies Program. She also signed a memorandum of understanding between Penn and Seoul National University (SNU), Korea’s oldest national university.

At the signing ceremony, which took place on 23 May in Seoul, Gutmann and SNU President Yeon-Cheon Oh were joined by Deans Rebecca Bushnell from the School of Arts and Sciences and Denis Kinane from the School of Dental Medicine. The memorandum of understanding will facilitate further collaborative research projects and other academic activities, including a revived Penn-in-Seoul program for 20 Penn students beginning this July. Students will take classes at SNU and participate in internships at multinational corporations and government agencies in Korea.

Gutmann also announced two gifts to Penn’s Korean Studies Program at a gathering of more than 300 alumni. Alumnus James Joo-Jin Kim gave US$6 million to the Korean Studies Program, to be renamed the James Joo-Jin Kim Program in Korean Studies, and an anonymous alumnus gave US$1.5 million to establish a post-doctoral fellowship in Korean Studies.

“Because the Republic of Korea is such an important global presence, I am especially pleased to be able to announce this gift in Seoul,” said Gutmann. “Joo-Jin Kim’s generosity will enable us to expose an even wider community of students to Korea — by weaving an understanding and appreciation of the country into the fabric of academic life at Penn.”

Korea represents the third-largest country of origin for international students at Penn — comprising roughly 11 per cent of all international students at the University. More than 1,100 alumni currently reside in Korea, and Penn had 543 graduate and undergraduate students from there in 2010/11.

Faculty from Penn’s School of Dental Medicine, which is among the oldest university-affiliated dental schools in the US, participated in the Penn Global Oral Health Symposium at SNU. Dean Denis Kinane and Profs. Syngcuk Kim, Dana Graves, Yan Yuan and Kelly Jordan-Sciutto took part in sessions on public and oral health.

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