During October 2011 the Rector of the University of Buenos Aires, Ruben Hallu, with his Secretary of International Affairs, Marcelo Tobin, traveled to Korea and China. This trip was organized in the framework of the institutional decision to promote and strengthen the cooperation with the region. The visit sought to reinforce this commitment and to concrete plans in order to foster the collaboration and interchange.
The delegation was received in Seoul by mr. Choe Yangboo, former Korean ambassador to the Republic of Argentina, and one of the driving forces behind the creation of the Korea Argentina Center in UBA.
During the stay in Seoul, the delegation met the President of Seoul National University, Dr. Oh Yeon - Cheon, in a meeting which was also attended by Ambassador Choe and his former cultural attache in Argentina, Mr. Park Wansoo. Meetings were also conducted with authorities of the Korea Foundation, and an important reunion was held with the President of Hankuk University, Park Chul, and Prof. Won Ho Kim (Dean of the Graduate School of International Studies) among other university authorities. During the meeting, both presidents signed an agreement for cooperation and exchange and also set up some issues of mutual interest for joint work between the two institutions.
|Universidad de Seul
Con el Presidente Dr. Oh Yeon Cheon
Universidad de Hankuk (Corea)
Firma del Convenio
Con el Presidente Park Chul
Lic. Nessim, Sec. Tobin, Rector Hallu, Presidente Park, Dr. Chung Kyung Won (Director del Instituto de Estudios Latinoamericanos), Ex Consejero Cultural en Argetina Park Wansoo y Prof. Won ho Kim (Decano de la Escuela de Posgrado Estudios Internacionales)
By Park Si-soo
Korean pop culture has crossed the Pacific Ocean to touch down in countries on the opposite side of the world.
A recent showcase featuring Korean pop songs and performances in Buenos Aires, Argentina’s capital, received a hot reception from young people there.
Yet the craze fell short of kick-starting academic activities that will help widen their view of the Asian nation that is still largely imagined as being in dismal terms; the 1950-53 “Korean War” and “a divided nation.” Against this backdrop, the president of the University of Buenos Aires (UBA) made his first visit to Seoul Wednesday to set the stage for exchange programs between his school and Korean universities and research institutes. UBA was the first school in South America to open a department for Korean studies in 2005.
“I’ve seen a noticeable increase in the number of students interested in Korea and Korean language,” Ruben Hallu, president of Argentina’s top university with more than 300,000 students, told The Korea Times. “They are still small in number. But it keeps increasing in the wake of growing awareness of Korea.”
Less than 10 graduate students are registered with the department, according to Choe Yang-boo, former Korean ambassador to Argentina who initiated a campaign to open the department.
Hallu said just several years ago many Argentine people didn’t even know where Korea was, but today it’s portrayed as home to the world’s leading information technology.
During his visit through Friday, the president will sign memorandums of understanding (MOUs) with Seoul National University, Hankuk University of Foreign Studies, and the Korea Foundation, a state-run institute facilitating academic and cultural exchange programs. Such bilateral academic activities are expected to take shape next year.
“We plan to run the program with financial support from the Argentine government and corporations,” he said. “I will discuss financial matters with my Korean counterparts during my visit. If the Korean government gives a helping hand in the form of scholarships or subsidies, the fledging program will take off smoothly and quickly reach a stable stage.”
He said UBA will initiate other campaigns to provide its students with more opportunities to learn the Korean language. “To learn the language of a county is the first step to learning about a nation,” he said.
Seoul and Buenos Aires established diplomatic ties in 1962. The trade volume between them totaled $1.16 billion in 2009, the latest statistics available. Korea imported $670 million worth of minerals, grain, leather and marine products, while exporting $490 million worth of cars, machinery and chemical products.
Last Sunday, July 12th, 2009, all of us that work at the Universidad of Buenos Aires (UBA) Korea Argentina Studies Center suffered an irreparable loss. Pedro Krotsch, 67 years old, passed away. He was our director and a renowned sociologist also specialized in higher education.
Pedro was born in Buenos Aires, in 1942. He graduated in sociology in the National University of La Plata (UNLP). In the seventies he exiled himself in Mexico, where he continued studies at the National Autonomous University of Mexico. He returned to Argentina in the middle of eighties.
Pedro Krotsch was an outstanding voice in university themes in Latin America. He had an extensive career as researcher, professor and member of scientific societies and journals. Since 2005, he was part of the managing board of the University Evaluation and Accreditation National Committee of Argentina (CONEAU). Between 2001 and 2005 he directed the UBA Gino Germani Research Institute. And since the foundation of the UBA Korea Argentina Studies Center in 2005, he was the director.
Pedro, who was known by his human warmth and very low profile, loved the academic discussion. He was a restless thinker, with unconventional ideas. He liked to provoke debate and managed to always attract his listeners' attention, utilizing irony as a tool. He will be enormously missed.
Conference organized on August 21st by the Gino Germani Research Institute and the Korea-Argentina Study Center of the University of Buenos Aires, with the participation of Prof. Youg Hee Shim (Hanyang University, Korea)
August 29th, 2008.
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