A foreign national has been appointed an administrative faculty member at Seoul National University for the first time since the school opened in 1946.
Bernhard Egger, a 38-year-old professor of computer science and engineering from Switzerland, was named director of information and international affairs of the college of engineering by its dean on Sept. 1.
He received a combined bachelor’s and master’s degree in computer science from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich in 2001 and a Ph.D. in the same field from Seoul National University in 2008.
After obtaining his doctoral degree, he spent three years as a senior research engineer at Samsung’s central research facility, the Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology, before rejoining the nation’s most prestigious university in March 2011.
His new job as a member of the administrative faculty includes identifying problems faced by foreign professors and students of the college and managing the school’s computer-related operations.
“It is a good opportunity to bridge foreign professors and students to the school,” he told local news media. “About 10 years ago in the university, few lectures were given in English and systems for foreigners were also insufficient. Compared with those times, it is much better now.”
“Despite the increasing number of foreign professors and students, Koreans are not well aware of their difficulties, because Koreans are familiar with everything here,” said Lee Kun-woo, dean of the college.
“Professor Egger has been appointed to the post to resolve their inconveniences from the perspective of foreigners.”
Currently, the college of engineering has about 6,000 undergraduate and graduate students on the register and 320 professors, of whom 527 students and 20 professors are foreign.
By Chun Sung-woo (firstname.lastname@example.org