Kyung Hee College of Korean Medicine Partners with UCI School of Medicine to Spread Korean Medicine

2021-02-08 Academic

The College of Korean Medicine recently signed a business agreement with the University of California, Irvine (UCI) to globalize the Korean Medicine education

Kyung Hee College of Korean Medicine and the University of California, Irvine signed a memorandum of understanding and took the first step toward the globalization of the Korean Medicine education. The online signing ceremony was attended by Dr. Steve Goldstein (Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs, UCI), Dr. Shaista Malik (Associate Vice Chancellor at College of Health Sciences, UCI), Professor Jae Dong Lee (Dean, College of Korean Medicine), and Professor Sanghoon Lee (Director, International Education Institute of Korean Medicine). During the event, participants shared the content of the MOU and discussed how to teach Korean Medicine as well as how to strengthen international cooperation.

University of California, Irvine, established in 1965, is the last of the ten campuses of the University of California system. While it is still young, UCI is widely recognized as a prestigious university with three Nobel laureates. Notably, UCI College of Health Sciences, supported by the Susan & Henry Samueli Foundation from 2017, is the first among US universities to introduce an integrative model of health into all medical categories of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences, Population & Public Health, and Integrative Health Institutes.

Vice Chancellor Goldstein said, “Both UCI and Kyung Hee encompass the entire field of medicine including nursing, pharmacy & pharmacology, public health, and integrated medicine. There we began to talk about our agreement.” “UCI is located in Orange County, Southern California, which is home to many Korean-Americans with strong interest in Korean Medicine. We will do our best to play a bridge role between western medicine and Korean medicine through this MOU with Kyung Hee College of Korean Medicine, which is outstanding in both education and research,” he added.

Dr. Goldstein’s visit to Kyung Hee in April 2019 accelerated the MOU process. Previously, UCI medical personnel visited the College of Korean Medicine in 2013 and 2014. On both occasions, discussions were held on how to incorporate Korean Medicine into UCI’s medical education. Since November 2020, UCI’s Medical School students have been taking online classes provided by the International Education Institute of Korean Medicine on the UCI online platform while professionals at the UCI Medical Center are studying Korean Medicine in the Kyung Hee online programs.

Dean Lee noted, “This MOU is a meaningful first step toward teaching Korean Medicine in top medical schools outside Korea. It will spark treatment and research based on Korean Medicine education. Amid difficulties brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, this MOU rewards our persistent effort for globalization of Korean Medicine. I hope it will prime the pump and boost the academic exchange between the two universities.”

Director Sanghoon Lee, who has worked on this MOU as well as overseas education projects, explained, “The two institutions share much in common, which I expect will generate synergy. The two sides exchanged over 140 e-mails in three months as they prepared the agreement. We did our best to get the most out of this frustrating pandemic situation.” “We will continue to develop excellent educational content in a bid to promote Korean Medicine abroad and help it have a global reach,” he said.

Since its founding in 1998, the International Education Institute of Korean Medicine has been leading the globalization of Korean Medicine. The institute was selected as a project organization for the Globalization of Korean Medicine project by the Ministry of Health and Welfare and the National Institute for Korean Medicine Development and is conducting clinical research and overseas education projects for medical personnel across the world.

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