Kaist board wants reforms altered

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Kaist board wants reforms altered

Board members of the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology yesterday demanded its president, Suh Nam-pyo, to alter but not wind down his reform measures to prevent stressed students from committing suicide.

The board members, however, didn’t discuss whether to ask Suh to resign at yesterday’s emergency board meeting, which took place at the JW Marriott Hotel in Seoul.

“Most board members said the reform drive should continue,” Oh Myung, board chairman, told reporters after the meeting ended. “The meeting wasn’t for deciding the fate of President Suh. It was to get board members briefed about the ongoing situation. We believed it’s not too late to make a decision on Suh after we finalize reform measures.”

The board was briefed about possible changes, including abolishing a punitive scholarship system that charges tuition to students who let their grades slip, and also allowing some lectures to be given in Korean.

Currently all lectures at Kaist are given in English, which puts stress on students with mediocre English skills.

“We received briefings on reform measures, but they weren’t the final version,” Oh said. “Nothing was decided today because board members demanded the university submit to us final reform measures after collecting opinions from professors and students.”

Suh said the recent suicides at Kaist broke his heart and he promised to make every effort to come up with the best reform measures.

According to Kaist, 15 out of 16 board members participated in the meeting, including one member who joined by video conference call.

One board member was unable to attend because he’s in the United States.

Before the meeting started, Kwak Yeong-chul, leader of the Kaist student council, made a surprise visit to the meeting and read a statement insisting that students wanted the scholarship system and English-only policy changed.

Meanwhile, Kaist yesterday formed an emergency committee to help run the school. The committee consists of five professors appointed by President Suh and five other professors recommended by Kaist’s faculty association and three student leaders.

The committee will operate for three months and come up with ideas to reform the school.

Kaist said the committee members could meet on April 18 at the earliest.

By Kim Mi-ju, Park Su-ryon [mijukim@joongang.co.kr]

한글 관련 기사 [뉴스엔]

카이스트 이사회 개최, 서남표 총장 거취 논의 안해 “개혁 지속에는 동의”

학생들과 교수의 연이은 자살로 비상상황에 접어든 카이스트(KAIST 한국과학기술원)의 이사회가 소집됐다.

카이스트 이사회는 4월 15일 오전 반포 JW매리어트호텔에서 긴급임시이사회를 가졌다. 이사회는 오전 7시 30분부터 9시 40분까지 약 2시간여 진행됐다.

이날 참여한 이사는 전체 이사 16명 중 15명으로 1명은 화상회의로 이날 이사회에 참석했다.

이사회는 최근 자살사태와 관련해 문제시되고 있는 징벌적 등록금제 폐지와 영어수업 축소 등 학새운영 개선방안을 학교 측으로부터 보고받은 것으로 알려졌다.

그러나 이날 이사회에서 서남표 총장의 거취는 논의되지 않았다. 이날 이사회는 현안보고와 카이스트 발전방안 등에 대해 논의하는 자리였다.

이날 이사회에 참석한 이사 대부분은 개혁에는 동의하는 것으로 알려졌다. 오명 이사장은 "대부분의 이사가 개혁 지속에는 동의했지만 방법론에 있어서 저마다 좋은 말씀들을 주셨다"고 말했다.

한편 이사회에 앞서 이사진은 오명 이사장의 제의로 숨진학생과 교수를 추모하는 묵념을 올렸다.

이날 이사회에 서남표 총장은 검은 양복에 근조리본을 달고 참석했다. 서남표 총장은 "인성 교육에 많은 노력을 기울여야 했는데 안타까운 일이 발생해 가슴이 아프다"며 "이사회의 의견을 받아들여 수립한 대책을 적극 보완해 최선의 방안을 강구할 수 있도록 노력하겠다"고 밝혔다.

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