On April 24 Seoul National University (SNU) and the World Bank contracted a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on cooperation between the two institutions. Among those present in Washington were President of Seoul National University OH Yeon-Cheon and World Bank President Jim Yong KIM.
After President Kim’s visit to SNU last November, agreements with the World Bank have been continuously discussed. After vigorous exchange, the World Bank inspection panel visited the university in March of this year. Various discussions were held, leading to the eventual agreement.
SNU and the World Bank are planning to engage in various exchanges. These include the sharing of expertise and knowledge of areas of cooperation in the future, pushing for collaborative businesses, seminars and workshops concerning areas of cooperation, and holding diverse conferences. In particular, through this agreement SNU and the World Bank will discuss the creation of pilot projects in areas related to health, medicine, technology, agriculture and public administration. These projects will involve the participation of the Departments of Medicine, Engineering, Agriculture and Life Sciences, and Public Health, as well as the Graduate School of Public Administration.
In the international community, the World Bank plays an imperative role in combating poverty. The World Bank’s vision shows its clear and precise desire: “Our work is challenging, but our mission is simple: Help reduce poverty.” The World Bank helps in improving the economies of each nation. In particular, it supports the economic and political policies of developing countries, providing consulting services as well. The World Bank is composed of five institutions, including the International Bank of Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and the International Development Association (IDA).
World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, who was born in Korea but grew up in Iowa, received a bachelor of arts degree from Brown University. He also earned an M.D. from Harvard Medical School as well as a PhD in Anthropology from Harvard University. He went on to become a professor of Harvard Medical School. During his tenure as a professor he also became director of the WHO’s HIV/AIDS Department. Later, he was named the 17th President of Dartmouth College, becoming the first Asian-American president of an Ivy League institution. Beginning in July of this year, Kim took office as the 12th President of the World Bank Group. Kim also served on the Preparation Committee for SNU Incorporation last year.
This agreement is emblematic because it reveals the astounding transition the nation has undergone from an aid-receiving to an aid-giving country in less than a century. Furthermore, it is particularly meaningful that SNU is joining hands with the World Bank, being the most prestigious university in the nation and a model for citizens to look up to. It is also highly symbolic that SNU has created an alliance with the World Bank, instigating hope that SNU, and Korea, will follow in the path of the international financial institution in creating a world free of poverty.
Written by OH Jung Eun, SNU English Editor, firstname.lastname@example.org
Proofread by Brett Johnson, SNU English Editor, email@example.com