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[Alumni Focus: Academia] Junghee Choi (2014, MDP, Korea)

  • Date 2022-06-24 11:35
  • CategoryStory
  • Hit449

KDI School of Public Policy and Management has been contributing greatly to the world by training future leaders in different fields such as public policy, development policy, public management, and so on. Today, the Alumni Association of KDI School of Public Policy and Management consists of more than 6600 graduates from all around the world, and they are making  valuable contributions in all areas throughout the public and private sector, academia, research institutions, and NGOs. Maintaining consistent and ongoing relationships with alumni and reflecting on their success stories is not only crucial for the School but also a valuable source of aspiration and motivation for current students’ career prospect after graduation. Considering the importance of alumni relations, KDIS News Center will publish a series of “alumni-focused” articles which reflect the success of members of the alumni community after graduation from KDIS. With this in mind, KDIS invites Junghee Choi (2014 MDP) in academia as the second interviewee for the "ALUMNI FOCUS" series.

Would you please introduce yourself for our audience?

Hello, I am Junghee Choi. I attended KDI School from 2014 to 2016 in the MDP program. I am currently a postdoc at the University of Oklahoma, where I will begin work as an assistant professor in educational leadership and policy studies in fall 2022. 

What's your research field?
My main research field is education policy, with a focus on higher education. In addition to examining whether policies and practices are successful in achieving their intended goals, I also aim to understand their unintended consequences. My recent projects have examined how government funding and accountability policies influence the behavior of public colleges and universities, and how changes in admissions and financial aid practices affect college access by students from diverse backgrounds. 

How has KDI School helped/influenced your career path?
My experience as a research assistant was very influential and helpful for the pursuit of my current career path. It gave me first-hand experience at systematically analyzing and interpreting data, and helped me understand the processes, including the ups and downs, involved with conducting research. Most importantly, it helped me realize that academic research is a career I would like to pursue. In addition, I greatly benefited from the accessibility of many of the professors, who despite their busy schedules, were always willing to answer my questions and provide advice and support. 

Please give some advice to the current KDIS students.
In general, the master’s programs at KDIS are not tightly connected to a particular career or industry, but there is great diversity in terms of student backgrounds, goals, and graduates’ career paths. I would advise students to actively think about how the rich and diverse resources of the school can be used to support their own goals and interests. Rather than thinking about this on your own, reach out to faculty and staff, current and former students, and take part in the various events that the school provides.  

If you have goals and aspirations to shape the world and pioneer the future, please tell us.
As someone who has just started his career, I am not sure how my work can shape the world or pioneer the future. I simply hope that my research and teaching will have a positive influence on individuals and society.  


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