Visiting Instructor in Political Science Mi-Son Kim joined the Knox campus this fall. Kim is a native of South Korea and hopes to create more opportunities for students to study Asian politics on campus.
Kim was born in the South Korean city of Suwon. She completed her undergraduate and Masters of Arts degree in political science in the country’s capital city of Seoul and earned a major in American Politics as well. In 2009, Kim began her Ph.D. program and is now in her last stage of her Ph.D. program at the University of Iowa, studying comparative politics and writing her dissertation.
While in South Korea, Kim had a paid internship as a legislative staff member in the Korean National Assembly, which gave her a clearer view on how politics worked.
“That type of work I did not really like it because I found the difference between theory and practice, and I decided that experience really just helped me to decide I’ll just pursue my career in academia,” she said.
Earlier in her Ph.D. program, Kim served as a teacher’s assistant for various classes. After receiving an email from the director of her department at the University of Iowa about a job opening at Knox, Kim decided to apply for the job.
“I [thought] it would be a really good opportunity for me to exercise my study and my expertise before I actually go into the job market,” she said.
Kim noticed that there were not many courses at Knox about Asian politics, specifically East Asian politics, and hopes to bring more knowledge about that subject to the Knox community.
Overall, Kim is pleased with her new job at Knox.
“I like the atmosphere here,” she said. “I was really surprised that the campus was more family-like and everyone kind of knew each other.”
She believes that the close-knit ties the community has created helps students be more active on campus and more motivated to do their work.
“I think that will affect students really positively all schools make an effort to help their students [be] really successful in their [lives], but here I think those efforts are more tangibly seen,” Kim said.
Kim stated that the faculty and student-body is open-minded and very friendly. She hopes her students “have a more interesting and colorful experience” with her as both a professor and a foreigner.