Sunghwa College president pocketed billions of school funds

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Sunghwa College president pocketed billions of school funds

Education authorities said the former president of Sunghwa College in South Jeolla embezzled billions of won from the school, explaining why the college paid just 130,000 won ($124) a month to its professors.

The Ministry of Education, Science and Technology announced yesterday that the former president and school founder, surnamed Lee, embezzled a total of 6.5 billion won since 2005, including 5.2 billion won that he transferred from the college’s coffers to a company that he owns.

Authorities also said that the college now has only 94 million won left in its operating funds.

According to the ministry, Lee appointed his wife, high school classmates and hometown friends to the college’s board as well as naming his 31-year-old daughter as his executive assistant.

Lee’s second daughter, 27, was appointed as the head of the accounting unit.

To promote his two daughters to high positions, Lee violated internal regulations and promoted his second daughter to a level-six position from level nine in just three years and three months.

The regulation states that a minimum of eight years is needed for an employee to be promoted from level nine to level six.

His second daughter was also appointed as an adjunct professor, teaching six subjects such as “Disabilities Welfare” and “Family Counseling and Treatment,” which are unrelated to her degree.

She is reported to have graduated from a national university outside of Seoul with a degree in multimedia and currently attends graduate school.

The ministry said that Sunghwa College also “engaged in corruption of exchanging credits for money to students with poor attendance and even gave a degree to students who fell short of graduation requirements.”

Kim Yong-gwan, deputy director at the ministry, said, “Procedures such as dismissal of executive boards and closing down the college will take effect according to the actions taken by the college upon inspection results.”

The college will face closure if orders are not followed by Oct. 1.

Last month, education authorities announced that Myungshin University, a four-year private university in Suncheon, engaged in corruption and requested the university’s former president to pay back the money he pocketed or face closure.

By Yim Seung-hye []

한글 관련 기사 [중앙일보]

성화대 교수 월급 왜 13만원인가 했더니 …

설립자가 65억원 교비 횡령
교과부 “반납 안 하면 학교 폐쇄”

전남 강진의 사립전문대 성화대가 거액의 교비를 빼돌리고 ‘학위 장사’를 해오다 교육과학기술부 감사에 적발됐다. 지난 6월 이 대학이 교수 월급으로 13만원을 지급했던 것도 설립자가 교비를 횡령했기 때문이라고 교과부는 밝혔다. 횡령액을 채워넣지 않을 경우 교과부는 학교 폐쇄나 법인 해산 조치를 취하겠다고 밝혀 명신대에 이어 부실대학 퇴출 대상이 될 것인지 주목된다.

 교과부는 성화대(학교법인 세림학원)에 대해 특별감사를 실시한 결과 1997년 이 대학을 설립한 이행기(55) 전 총장은 2005년부터 본인이 운영하는 회사로 교비 52억원을 빼돌리는 등 총 65억원을 횡령했다고 1일 밝혔다. 교과부 현철환 사학감사팀장은 “이 때문에 올 6월 기준으로 대학 운영자금이 9400만원밖에 남지 않아 교직원 130명의 급여를 지급하지 못하는 상황에 빠졌다”고 말했다. 교과부는 이 전 총장을 검찰에 고발했다.

 이 전 총장은 법인 이사회와 학교 경영에 가족을 대거 동원해 왔다. 특히 차녀(27)는 경영대학원 재학 중 겸임교수로 임용돼 장애인복지론 등 전공과 무관한 강의를 한 것으로 드러났다. 2009년부터 올 1학기까지 법정 출석일수에 미달한 2만3879명(강의당 인원 중복 계산·시간제등록생 1만5997명 포함)에게 학점을 주는 등 학사관리도 엉망이었다. 교과부는 지난해 5월 이 전 총장의 해임을 요구했지만 그는 이후에도 총장 자격으로 사학연금부담금을 납부해 온 것으로 드러났다. 교과부는 이 대학에 10월 1일까지 교비 횡령 및 부당집행액 72억원을 반납하고 관련자를 중징계하라고 통보했다.

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