"Yeungnam''s Force that Moves Korea!"
The above is the slogan that Yeungnam University posted on newspapers around the nation after the National Assembly elections in April. In the 18th National Assembly elections held on April 9, 17 alumni of Yeungnam University were voted into office. 15 regional assemblymen and 2 proportional representation were sworn in, becoming one of the universities that graduated the most National Assembly persons together with Sungkyungkwan University (17), following Seoul National University (111) and Yonsei and Korea University (25). It is the highest among provincial universities.
When examining the 18 Assembly persons from Yeungnam University, there are Jeon Jae-hee, who was appointed as Minister of Health, Welfare and Family Affairs last July (Gwangmyeong, Gyeonggi, Grand National Party) and Kim Seong-jo (Gumi, Gyeongbuk, Grand National Party), as well as Kim Kwang-lim, who was the vice-minister of the Ministry of Finance and Economy and was appointed as an independent party for Andong in Gyeongbuk (later joined the Grand National Party). In addition, Lee Myeong-gyu was re-elected (North Daegu, Grand National Party) and Chu Ho-yeong (Suseong, Daegu, Grand National Party), who was the spokesperson for Lee Myeong-bak, was elected into the National Assembly. Park Bo-hwan (Hwaseong, Gyeonggi, Grand National Party) and Jeon Hye-sook (Democratic Party), who was appointed as a proportional representative are also alumni of Yeungnam University.
Furthermore, Kim Tae-hwan (Gumi, independent later joined Grand National Party), Jeong Hee-soo (Yeongcheon, Grand National Party), Lee In-gi (Goryeong Seongju Chilgok, independent later joined Grand National Party), Lee Cheol-woo (Kimcheon, Grand National Party), Choi Gyeong-hwan (Cheongdo, Gyeongsan, Grand National Party), Yoo Seung-min (East Daegu, Grand National Party), Seo Gab-weon (Suncheon, Democratic Party) and Song Yeong-seon (Pro-Park Alliance), appointed as a proportional representative, graduated from the Graduate School of Business Administration. Chu Seong-yeong (East Daegu, Grand National Party) and Cho Weon-jin (Dalseo, Daegu, Pro-Park Alliance and later joined Grand National Party) graduated from the Graduate School of Public Administration. In the 17th National Assembly Election in 2004, a total of 10 alumni, including five from undergraduate school, were elected into the National Assembly.
Rising politicians from Yeungnam University since the Lee Myeong-bak administration include Jeon Jae-hee, Minister of Health, Welfare and Family Affairs, and Chu Ho-seong. Minister Jeon passed the 13th national public administration examination and after becoming a public employee worked at the Ministry of Labor as the director for labor insurance and director for occupational training. From 1994 to 1998, she was in office as mayor of Gwangmyeong in Gyeonggi. She worked as a committee person for the Health and Welfare Committee as a member of the 16th~18th National Assembly for Gwangmyeong. She was the first woman to pass the national public administration examination (13th) and was the first government-appointed and publicly appointed mayor as well.
17 in the National Assembly becoming a powerful group in politics
Aside from elections, Yeungnam University alumni are showing their colors in government, finance, academics and the press with the dawn of the Lee Myeong-bak administration. In Lee''s first cabinet, Kim Jang-sil was appointed as the first vice-minister of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Kim Jong-shin was appointed as an auditing commissioner of the Board of Audit and Lee Chang-hwan was appointed as the president of the Audit and Inspection Training Institute.
Kim Jang-shil, first vice-minister of the MCST, was born in Namhae in Gyeongnam and passed the 23rd public administration examination and then began his political career as a public administration agent for the Ministry of Culture and PR. He then worked as a secretary for the president (state affairs), vice commissioner for the presidential secretary (state affairs 1) and then went on as a PR director for the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, director of arts for the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, secretary-general of the Korea National University of Arts, Office for Government Policy Coordination Education and Culture screening director and chief of religious affairs for the Ministry of Culture and Tourism. He has worked at the Cheongwadae for many years and has a strong social network in politics.
Furthermore, Yeungnam University alumni also entered the Cheongwadae. Kim Myeong-sik is directly under the office of the president as the secretary for HR and Song Jong-ho is under the office of economy as the secretary for small and medium businesses. Two is not a small number even for Seoul National University or Korea University. Secretary Kim is from the class of 76 at the Yeungnam University School of Management and has worked as the HR policy director for the Civil Service Commission, while Secretary Song is from the class of 75 at the Yeungnam University Department of Electrical Engineering and has worked as the regional director of venture businesses for the Small and Medium Business Administration.
In the legal sector, Lee Byeong-hoo, former judge of the Supreme Court, is the most well known. He was also the supreme judge for the Incheon court and also worked as a Constitution committee man. Lee Min-soo, former supreme judge of the Busan court also worked as the head judge for the Cheongju court, Busan court and Daegu court, while Bae Gi-weon, judge of the Supreme Court was the only person to be a graduate from a provincial university.
Of level 1~3 high-ranking public officials submitted by the Civil Service Commission last year, there were 1,265 high-ranking officials that graduated from a university. Of these, 307 (24.3%) were from Seoul National University, followed by Korea University, Yonsei University, and Yeungnam University placed 9th with 36. There were also 4 Yeungnam University alumni during the Noh Moo-hyeon administration, making it number 1 among provincial private universities.
Active entry into public corporations and government with the MB administration
Coming into the MB administration, there has been an active entry into public corporations among Yeungnam University alumni. Lee Su-hwa, former vice-president of Citibank Korea became the president of the Korea Securities Depository, Cho Hyeon-yong, former vice executive officer of the Korea Railroad Corporation became the CEO of the Korea Rail Network Authority, Park Young-su, former vice-president of the Korea Tourism Organization became the first president of the Jeju Tourism Organization, and there are also Eom Woo-hong, CEO of the Korea National Park Service and Yang Yong-woon, CEO of the Environment Management Corporation.
In the finance sector, Lee Dong-geol, president of Good Morning Shinhan Securities, Cho Jae-hong, president of Dongbu Life, Lee Seung-han president of Samsung Tesco Homeplus, Jang Byeong-jo, vice-president of Samsung Electronics and Park Oh-gyu, vice-president of Samsung Total are some notable figures. Lee Dong-geol, a genuine banker, took the reigns of Good Morning Shinhan Securities from 2007 and worked as an investment banker making it one of the top-notch investment banks. He is said to have perfected the fusion of the merger that occurred five years ago between Good Morning Securities and Shinhan Securities.
Cho Jae-hong, president of Dongbu Life, was born in Daegu and attended Kyungpook National University high school and went on to Yeungnam University college of law. After entering Samsung Life, he gained experiences in sales, HR and customer support and after becoming president of Dongbu Life in July 2006, he raised Dongbu Life''s status in the finance sector. Jang Byeong-jo, who became vice president of Samsung Electronics last June, is known to be the field-director of Samsung''s ''Anycall Miracle''. He entered Samsung Electronics in 1980 and worked for 27 years in the Gumi plant and was a pivotal part in achieving the Anycall Miracle. He graduated from Daegu High School and Yeungnam University.
There is an especially high number of executives among Yeungnam University alumni in Hyundai Heavy Industries, KEPCO and Samsung Life Insurance. In the case of Hyundai Heavy Industries, 17 of 200 executives are from Yeungnam, while 11.1% of KEPCO executives are from Yeungnam University following only Korea University (22.2%) and Seoul National University (16.7%). For Samsung Life Insurance, Yeungnam University tied for second with 9.1% with Korea University, following Seoul National University.
“Yeungnam University is key to success in Daegu and Gyeongbuk regions”
However, after 1990, it became difficult for Yeungnam University to attract talented students. As college entrance depended solely on college entrance exams, talented students were filtered into universities in the Seoul area, and Yeungnam began to fall behind even against Kyungpook University. Kang also said, "because many passed the national public administration examinations, we had the highest number of high-ranking officials among provincial universities up until 2005, but there has been a falling number of students passing the national public administration exam and judicial exam." He also added, "However, they are becoming stronger in election and appointed positions in government such as in the National Assembly, and thus, there is now a saying that ''in order to do politics in Daegu, you need to have a Yeungnam University AMP (highest course for graduate school of management)''."
In the Daegu and Gyeongbuk areas, Kim Kwan-yong, the current governor of Gyeongsangbuk-do, is a Yeungnam University alumni. Governor Kim, who majored in economics, received his masters degree in public administration at the Yeungnam University Graduate School of Public Administration. Being born into a poor farming family in Gumi, Gyeongbuk, he graduated from elementary school and went to Daegu Normal School and began working as an instructor from the age of 19. He taught during the day and at night he went to college and graduated from Yeungnam University. He is currently the chairman of the Yeungnam University Alumni Association.
For self governing organizations, there are Gang In-gil, Busan Gangseo-gu office director, Lim Byeong-heon Daegu Nam-gu office director, Lee Jae-man Daegu Dong-gu office director, Choi Byeong-guk mayor of Gyeongsan and Shin Hyeon-guk mayor of Mungyeong. Jeong Han-tae, former governor of Cheongdo who lost the election due to a lobbying scandal, is also from Yeungnam University, while Lee Ui-geung, former governor of Gyeongbuk, who is now the president of Daeshin University and the chairman of the National Council of the Saemaul Movement, is also from Yeungnam University.
A unique figure is Park Gyeong-cheol, also known as the ''rural doctor'', who appeared as a public screening committee person for the Democratic Party. Being from the class of 83 in the College of Medicine, he runs his clinic in Andong, Gyeongbuk and is also a best-seller author of ''Rich Economics for a Rural Doctor'', as well as an expert in stock investments, hosting his own investment show. He is also a columnist that writes for many different papers including our own. Some other notable figures are novelist Kim Weon-il, poet Seo Jeong-yun who wrote ''Standing Alone'', Seol Do-yun CEO of Seol & Company which is a musical company, Kim Jae-bak head coach of the LG Twins baseball team, Yang Jun-hyeok Samsung Lions baseball player and Lee Su-ho, head committee person of the Democractic Labor Party.
Celebrating its 60th anniversary last year, Yeungnam University was selected for law schools together only with Kyungpook University in the Daegu and Gyeongbuk areas. One Assembly person who is in the 18th National Assembly stated, "Though there is a difference in numbers alone, Yeungnam University is working as the third power following Korea University and Seoul National University in the MB Administration."