“May the Students Continue Joong-Hoon Shin’s Research”
Young-Eun Hong establishes the Joong-Hoon Shin Scholarship
with a donation of KRW 100 million
KAIST faculty and staff to raise funds in July
“The Joong-Hoon Shin Scholarship was formed for students to fulfill the dream of my late husband. I hope that the passionate students of KAIST will continue his research.”
Once touted as a promising research in the field of nanoscience, Professor Joong-Hoon Shin of the Graduate School of Nanoscience and Technology passed away at the young age of 48 from an unfortunate accident in September 2016. His wife, Mrs. Young-Eun Hong, donated KRW 100 million to the KAIST Development Fund in his memory.
On April 7, Mrs. Hong attended the pledging ceremony at the main administration building of KAIST. The university will respect her wishes to establish the Joong-Hoon Shin Scholarship, and provide scholarships to outstanding students in the Graduate School of Nanoscience and Technology and the Department of Physics.
Mrs. Hong said, “Beginning in July, I will raise funds at Harvard and Caltech, where my husband earned his academic degrees. I look forward to the support and encouragement of all who remember him.”
President Sung-Chul Shin said, “I am truly grateful to Professor Joong-Hoon Shin, who dedicated his entire life to research and education, and his family. Your contribution will fuel KAIST to advance further and create global value.”
Professor Joong-Hoon Shin was in a fatal car accident in Gangwon Province in September 2016 after attending a workshop. He joined the Department of Physics at KAIST as a professor in September 1996. At that time, he was the youngest professor ever appointed by a university in Korea.
Professor Joong-Hoon Shin
Professor Shin was known for his achievements in silicon photonics and silicon nanocrystal structures. He was the recipient of numerous awards such as the Fellowship Award (2005), Presidential Citation (2006), KAIST Achievement Award (2009), and KAIST Research Award (2011).
Professor Shin’s research team succeeded in developing a biomimetic reflective display, which uses light as an energy source to create bright displays with low energy consumption. The results were published in Nature in 2012 and gained considerable attention from academia.
Below is an interview with Mrs. Hong.
Q. What motivated you to donate to KAIST?
A. The news of my husband’s death shocked many students, faculty, and researchers, especially those at the Graduate School of Nanoscience and Technology. I decided to give back to the school to encourage them to continue my husband’s research. I received a lot of help and support after the accident. The Optical Society of Korea opened a classroom in memory of my husband. I have always felt grateful, and wanted to do my part.
Q. Can you describe Professor Joong-Hoon Shin?
A. He was affectionate and loved people. He hung out with the students like they were his friends. He enjoyed exercising and drinking. He struck a good balance between work and play. Every July, the school invites alumni to a homecoming event. My husband would excitedly pick out gifts for the graduates. Last year, he invited his colleagues to celebrate the 20th year of his appointment. He tried to find a date when the most people could attend, and looked forward to the day like a child waiting for Santa.
Q. What expectations do you have for the Joong-Hoon Shin Scholarship?
A. I’d like the certificate of the Joong-Hoon Shin Scholarship to include the following: Giving back to society is an essential duty of talented individuals. As suggested by President Sung-Chul Shin, I agree that students should know about their social responsibility.
Q. How did your husband feel about living in Daedeok?
A. My husband loved Daedeok. He spent 20 years in our peaceful neighborhood. It was an old house, but he always invited foreign researchers to our place. He would explain to them not only the history of our house, but also that of the Science Town. He believed that living as a scientist in Daedeok was a true blessing.
Q. What are your thoughts on the culture of giving?
A. I hope to see more small donations in Daedeok Science Town. Even if it’s only a small amount, there should be a more active culture of giving. In addition to companies and institutes, the general public should contribute to the advancement of science and technology. Tax benefits can be one way of motivating people to make donations.
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