Harvard Model Congress Asia Congratulatory Remarks
Event: Harvard Model Congress Asia
Date: 09:30, January 8 (Fri), 2016
Venue: Auditorium, University Cultural Center
On this joyous occasion of the 12th Harvard Model
Congress Asia, I would like to extend a very warm welcome to all gathered
here today: The students from various high schools in Asia and their
coaches, the board members and other student leaders from the Harvard
Model Congress, and of course, the student volunteers of Seoul National
University without whom this event would not have been possible.
For more than a decade, Harvard Model Congress Asia has provided a
unique and invaluable platform for many high school students striving to
become the next generation of global leaders.
Through this interactive program, they study global issues, draft policy,
debate, and form cross-cultural ties with delegates from Asia and other parts
of the world. I sincerely hope that this conference offers the high school
students an excellent opportunity to achieve all of those and ultimately
become the global leaders of tomorrow. Now, first and foremost, I would
like to say a few words for the participants from high schools around the
I hope all of you realize how much effort has gone in to this event. Make
sure you thank all of your coaches for teaching you how to develop
analytical skills, build sound arguments, and competency in public speaking.
You should also thank the members of Harvard Model Congress for making
this platform possible.
I have no doubt that your participation at this Harvard Model Congress
event will help you succeed as the leaders of tomorrow. I truly hope you do
your best to take advantage of this wonderful opportunity, and form
life-long friendship along the way.
Secondly, I would also like to express my appreciation for the board
members and student leaders of Harvard Model Congress Asia who have
devoted time and effort in bringing this conference in Seoul. All of you flew
all the way to Seoul to organize this event. Your classmates are enjoying
their winter break in warm Florida or Mexico in swimsuits, but you are here
in Seoul, probably several degrees colder than Cambridge today!
I am very impressed. It is clear that you are demonstrating the very
leadership skills that you strive to teach these high school students. I also
have no doubt that you are, at this very moment, making a huge impact on
the global society through your efforts. Thank you all for being here.
Finally, a few words of thanks are in order for the student volunteers of
Seoul National University. Along with the Harvard College students, you are
also serving as a good model for the future leaders. It is truly wonderful
that these student-participants and the members of the Harvard Model
Congress will get the chance to get to know Seoul National University, the
City of Seoul, as well as our country, through each one of you. I am very
proud of you.
I would like to share with you today what I always tell my students at
Seoul National University. Since my tenure as the SNU President, I have
always emphasized the importance of ‘virtue and compassion’ to my own
Yes, I am sure you will become a leader in your society, as global leaders.
But I also hope that you would be a leader with ‘virtue and compassion’,
caring for others and your community at large. Intelligence, which I have no
doubt you all have, is important - but it is not enough.
Good will and warm hearts, products of ‘virtue and compassion’, are
equally important, if not more important, than intelligence in a leader.
Without ‘virtue and compassion’, you are merely an ‘actor,’ and not a
‘leader.’ As a leader, you need to be proactive, ready to work for your
community and society when the needs arise --- when you see an
opportunity for you to make difference.
I trust that Harvard Model Congress Asia in Seoul will serve as a jumping
board for your future aspirations to become a leader --- a leader with
‘virtue and compassion’.
My best wishes to everyone --- and thank you all.