SVA Connects with Alumni, Strengthens Partnerships in Korea

November 17, 2014

Last week, SVA Executive Vice President Anthony P. Rhodes led a College delegation on a trip to Seoul for five days of alumni and industry outreach. The second such initiative in two years, the visit coincided with the presentation of “Underground Images” at Sangmyung University. South Korea is home to one of the College’s largest and most active alumni groups: Some 2,000 graduates live in the country, with more added every year. Click through for photos and more on the trip.

APRatSMUThe trip also marked the opening of a satellite SVA office in Seoul, part of a larger effort to establish resources in countries with significant alumni and student presences. Spearheaded by Rhodes, the same effort led to the recent opening of an office in Shanghai, China, also.

The week’s activities in Seoul were kicked off on Sunday afternoon with an SVA Admissions event, staffed by Adam Rogers, director of international outreach, and  Renyi Hu, international regional coordinator, and held at the city’s Shilla Hotel. Also on hand to meet with prospective students were Andrew Chang, director of the Office of Programs for International Students, and controller Michael Campbell.

SeoulOutingSam Modenstein, executive director of External Relations; Jane Nuzzo, director of Alumni Affairs and Development; and Angie Wojak, director of Career Development, undertook a packed schedule of meetings with companies in the industries SVA serves. The docket included appointments with Oricom Chief Creative Officer Alfred Park (BFA 2012 Graphic Design), who founded ad and design company Big Ant International, and representatives from Autodesk; CJ Corporation, a food, lifestyle and media conglomerate; McNulty; animation studio Roi Visual; electronics giant Samsung; architecture and design firm Urbantainer; and the Seoul office of Wunderman, a division of the Young & Rubicam Group, whose clients include Best Buy, Coca-Cola and Pfizer.

Nuzzo also met with a number of Seoul-based alumni, including artist Byun, Soon-Choel (BFA 1999 Photography), who led her on a guided tour of his current solo exhibition at the Buk Seoul Museum of Art.

SooncheolByunOn Tuesday evening, the assembled SVA group attended the public reception for “Underground Images”—the world-traveling exhibition of the College’s long-running and influential subway advertising campaign—at Sangmyung University. (Sangmyung, or SMU, offers a dual degree program in partnership with SVA, enabling Korean students to earn a dual degree.) The exhibition was curated by Rhodes, who has also been creative director of the campaign since 2007.

RibbonCuttingSMURhodes observed, “Our posters have not only added color and excitement to the New York City subway stations. They have also had a broad influence on students, artists, designers and creative people around the world. I’m proud that SVA is the only art college in the United States that has made this kind of commitment to the arts community.”

The Korean Alumni Association held its annual meeting and dinner on Wednesday, where Prof. Seo, Myoung-Duck was re-elected president of the association. SVA Executive Vice President Anthony P. Rhodes acknowledged Prof. Seo for his longtime service and announced the establishment of a new scholarship fund for Korean students. Fund details will be announced by the SVA Alumni Society in the coming months. Alumni from 10 different programs turned out to catch up with classmates and the SVA delegation. A group of alumni designed a commemorative wine label for the occasion. The association also unveiled  the association’s traditional banner, which is displayed at members’ weddings, funerals and other memorable occasions.


Images: SVA Executive Vice President Anthony P. Rhodes with SMU’s Dean of Foreign Affairs Kwon, Hae-Sook and SMU President Goo, Kee-Heon; Korean Alumni Association President Seo, Myoung-Duck with members of the SVA delegation at the Korean Furniture Museum; photographer and SVA alumnus Byun, Soon-Choel at Buk Seoul Museum of Art, where he is the subject of a solo exhibition; the ribbon cutting to celebrate the opening of “Underground Images” at SMU; SVA alumni at Big Ant International.


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