ogang should set its common vision and objectives by means of dialogue and collaboration and be a community that inspires new development.
During the previous 56 years of my life as a Jesuit I took on my apostolic roles after conferring with superiors and making adequate preparation.
However, the job of chairperson of the board of trustees at Sogang was my first experience of a sudden appointment.
My surprise at being requested to take the job was accompanied by an assurance that it was a mission from God and grace would be there, so my
surprise turned into a feeling of joy. I also thought of how, when Jesus called fishermen to be his apostles, they abandoned their boats and their
nets, and so I should drop all other work and embrace the duties of the chairperson. I was aware that the office of chairperson would entail
accepting insults more often than glory, but I felt happiness that Jesus would be with me if I would take on this small cross that He offers me.
There are burdens put on the shoulders of the chairperson, but there are many others who help to carry them. The chairperson, rather than doing
one’s own work, should provide a framework for the corporation, the faculty, the employees, the students, the alumni, the benefactors, etc. to
better carry out their roles. The framework is vision and dialogue. The former president of Boston College, Rev. William P. Leahy, S.J., when he visited
Sogang for the 50th anniversary, stressed the importance of having vision. He said that vision is necessary so that Sogang would carry out its mission into the future and not merely bask in the brilliant light of its development over its first half-century.
The Jesuit educational tradition of more than 470 years is part of our identity, making Sogang to be what it is. Founded on the Jesuit apostolic spirit,
Sogang created a new academic culture in Korea. Through the Jesuit educational ideal that stresses critical and creative thinking and a positive
attitude, Sogang was able to establish its particular identity, unique in Korea’s present situation. As we look ahead toward Sogang’s 100th
anniversary we should start by taking a strong leap forward and we should attend to the changes and demands of each age and face new
challenges, reviving and renewing Sogang’s true self. Therefore our long term direction and objectives should be clear, and we need a vision
that inspires and enlivens all our members.
As Rev. William Leahy said, achieving a vision is difficult, and maybe it won’t be perfect or satisfy everyone, but without it our reason for living can
easily become blurred and stuck, making development difficult. Knowing this, Sogang must become a community that instills dialogue and
collaboration among its members, forms a common vision and objectives, and arouses a dynamic new development.
We are all united in having love for Sogang. Sogang belongs to all the many Sogangers who have been together here. I hope that all will
continue to have concern for Sogang, and with affection work together for Sogang’s future. Thank you.
Sogang University Corporation
Chairperson Park Munsu