North Korea denies professors visa renewals for U.S.

By Korea Herald
  • Published : Feb 5, 2014 - 20:18
  • Updated : Feb 5, 2014 - 20:18
North Korea denied visa renewals for two American professors, who believe that their denial resulted from encouraging students to think critically, according to Wednesday’s Voice of America radio broadcast.

Sandralee and Robert Moynihan, former professors at the Pyongyang University of Science and Technology, were denied reentry to North Korea at the end of last year, when the couple tried to return for the new semester as associate professors.

The couple received no definite answer as to the reason for the denial and was only told that the situation was unfortunate. Sandralee, however, suspected that the denial has been linked to her teaching style.

In one of her lectures, Sandralee handed out a translated copy of the North Korean Constitution, and asked the students to evaluate whether the constitution was applied in daily life, she told VOA. She also encouraged students to ask questions and speak up if their opinion differed from that of the professor.

The American couple taught economics and business administration at PUST from August to November 2013. PUST is North Korea’s first privately funded university, providing technology and management courses in English.