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KAIST 2019 Commencement at a Glance
(KAIST 2019 Commencement Ceremony) This year, KAIST awarded a total of 2,705 degrees: 654 PhD degrees, 1,255 master’s degrees, and 796 bachelor’s degrees. Including this year’s numbers, KAIST has conferred a total of 63,830 degrees since its foundation in 1971. Parents, family, and friends came to campus to congratulate the graduates with big smiles and hugs. Faculty and staff members also attended the ceremony to celebrate their graduation. This year, distinguished guests including National Assembly Member Kyung-Jin Kim and Vice Minister for Science, Technology and Innovation Dae-sik came to celebrate the day with the KAIST community. During the commencement, KAIST also announced the recipients of its undergraduate academic awards. The Minister of Science and ICT Award was won by Do-Yoon Kim from the Department of Aerospace Engineering, the KAIST Board of Trustee Chairperson Award went to Se-rin Lee from the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, the KAIST Presidential Award was won by Hee-Ju Kim from the Department of Physics, the KAIST Alumni Association President Award went to Hyeon-Seong Park from the School of Electrical Engineering, and finally the KAIST Development Foundation Chairperson Award was won by Gyeong-Hoon Lee from the Department of Mathematical Sciences. This year’s valedictorian Eun-Seok Jeong from the School of Computing said, “I believe that we are able to stand here today because we challenged ourselves to confront our shortcomings and our uncertainty. If we continue to develop, we will become a better person than we were yesterday.” (KAIST President Sung-Chul Shin and Woo-Seok Jeong, '19 PhD in Aerospace Engineering) As a KAIST alumnus and fellow scientist, President Sung-Chul Shin offered his congratulations and emphasized that graduates should continue to pursue the C³ spirit. “In this age of great transformation, embrace challenges and exercise creativity as you have learnt through your education and research at KAIST. And keep in mind the importance of caring for others. Please remember that challenge and creativity will have more meaning if rendered with a caring spirit,” he said.
Team KAT Wins the Autonomous Car Challenge
(Team KAT receiving the Presidential Award) A KAIST team won the 2018 International Autonomous Car Challenge for University Students held in Daegu on November 2. Professor Seung-Hyun Kong from the ChoChunShik Graduate School of Green Transportation and his team participated in this contest with the team named KAT (KAIST Autonomous Technologies). The team received the Presidential Award with a fifty million won cash prize and an opportunity for a field trip abroad. The competition was conducted on actual roads with Connected Autonomous Vehicles (CAV), which incorporate autonomous driving technologies and vehicle-to-everything (V2X) communication system. In this contest, the autonomous vehicles were given a mission to pick up passengers or parcels. Through the V2X communication, the contest gave current location of the passengers or parcels, their destination, and service profitability according to distance and level of service difficulty. The participating vehicles had to be equipped very accurate and robust navigation system since they had to drive on narrow roads as well as go through tunnels where GPS was not available. Moreover, they had to use camera-based recognition technology that was invulnerable to backlight as the contest was in the late afternoon. The contest scored the mission in the following way: the vehicles get points if they pick up passengers and safely drop them off at their destination; on the other hand, points are deducted when they violate lanes or traffic lights. It will be a major black mark if a participant sitting in the driver’s seat needs to get involved in driving due to a technical issue. Youngbo Shim of KAT said, “We believe that we got major points for technical superiority in autonomous driving and our algorithm for passenger selection.” This contest, hosted by Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy, was the first international competition for autonomous driving on actual roads. A total of nine teams participated in the final contest, four domestic teams and five teams allied with overseas universities such as Tsinghua University, Waseda University, and Nanyang Technological University. Professor Kong said, “There is still a long way to go for fully autonomous vehicles that drive flexibly under congested traffic conditions. However, we will continue to our research in order to achieve high-quality autonomous driving technology.” (Team KAT getting ready for the challenge)
KAIST Celebrates the 2017 Commencement
KAIST hosted its 2017 Commencement, awarding diplomas to 2,767 members of the Class of 2017 during a ceremony on February 17. President Sung-Mo Kang, Minister Yang-hee Choi of Science, ICT, and Future Planning, and Chairman of the KAIST Board of Trustees Jang-Moo Lee joined the ceremony along with the graduates and their family and friends at the Ryu Keun Chul Sports Complex. The graduating class included 638 Ph.D. degrees, 1,335 Master’s degrees, and 794 Bachelor’s degrees being conferred. Among them, Young-Ki Song from the Department of Electric Engineering was honored to win the Minister’s Award, the highest award bestowed to an undergraduate. The KAIST Presidential Award went to Min-Jae Park of the Department of Mathematical Sciences and the KAIST Board of Trustee Chairman’s Award was presented to Jae-Hyung Cho from the Department of Mechanical Engineering. Including this year’s graduating class, KAIST has turned out more than 59,000 highly educated science and technology talents including 11,731 Ph.D.s since its foundation in 1971. This year, 24-year-old Seo-Hee Oh earned her Ph.D. in chemistry as the youngest Ph.D. of the year after completing her Master’s and Ph.D. combined course in three years. President Sung-Mo Kang praised the creativity of this graduating class and their excellent ability in his charge, saying, “As future leaders of our society, you are expected to develop a sense of compassion and outstanding professionalism to contribute to the advancement of not only Korea but also the whole world.’ For full text of President Kang’s charge to the graduates, please click.
KAIST Commencement 2016
KAIST hosted its 2016 commencement ceremony on February 19, 2016 at the Sports Complex on campus. KAIST celebrated the event with five thousand participants including graduating students, faculty, guests, Vice Minister Nam-Ki Hong of Science, ICT and Future Planning of Korea, Chairman Jang-Moo Lee of KAIST's Board of Trustees, and President Jeong-Sik Ko of the KAIST Alumni Association. President Patrick Aebischer of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland, and the former Speaker of the National Assembly of Korea Chang-Hee Kang received honorary doctorates in science and technology for their contributions to the advancement of science and engineering in education and research. KAIST granted 570 doctoral degrees, 1,329 master’s degrees, and 867 bachelor degrees on this day. Yoon-Bum Lee of the Chemistry Department graduated with honors; Woo-Young Jin of the Mathematical Sciences Department received the Chairman’s Award of the KAIST Board and Eun-Hee Yoo of the Biological Sciences Department for the KAIST Presidential Award. Min-Hyun Cho and Yoon-Seok Chang were recipients of the President’s Award of the KAIST Alumni Association and the President’s Award of the University Supporting Association, respectively. President Steve Kang addressed the ceremony and congratulated the graduates, saying, “Now, your task is to make significant contributions to your communities: be leaders in your fields and remain active members of society. Given your academic knowledge and vision for the future, I encourage you to dream big.”
Professor Suk-Bok Chang receives 14th Korea Science Award in the field of Chemistry
Professor Suk-Bok Chang from the Department of Chemistry at KAIST received the “2013 Korea Science Award” in chemistry hosted by the National Research Foundation and the Ministry of Science, ICT, and Future Planning, Republic of Korea. The Korea Science Award is a presidential award of Korea, which was first established in 1987 to recognize research excellence in natural science. Three scientists are selected for the award in every other year. Professor Chang primarily researches the catalyzing mechanism of carbon-hydrogen bonds in organic molecules. He has succeeded in making great progress in the field of organic chemistry especially in developing a new type of transition metal catalytic behavior that can be applied to low-reactivity compounds. Hydrocarbons are abundant in nature, but its unreactive nature in ambient conditions makes it unsuitable as reactant for compound synthesis. In addition, the mechanism behind transition metal catalyzed carbon-hydrogen bond synthesis has not been proven sufficiently. The prediction that fossil fuels will be depleted before the end of the century makes hydrocarbon synthesis an extremely important matter. The need for an effective hydrocarbon synthesis method inspired Professor Chang to pursue research in the transition metal catalysis method and to develop a catalytic system that would allow efficient synthesis even in ambient conditions. Professor Chang has been the lead researcher for the Institute for Basic Science’s “molecule catalysis reaction research team” since December 2012 and has been carrying out this research in KAIST.
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