ILR Korea Alumni Host Visit by Sarosh Kuruvilla
The ILR Korea Forum recently hosted a special meeting of alumni and friends in Seoul to welcome Sarosh Kuruvilla, ILR professor and chair of International Programs. The event was convened by Tae-Jin Kim, MILR ‘93 and vice president of corporate management & SK Academy, SK Corporation, along with Jong-Cheol Kim, MILR ‘02, on assignment at SK from the Ministry of Labor.
Korea is home to over fifty ILR alumni and former visiting fellows, making it the largest and perhaps most active ILR group outside the U.S. The Forum meets regularly to discuss current topics in HR/IR and employment policy. Kuruvilla's Dec 4 meeting with the group was an occasion to share recent news from ILR and Cornell, and to exchange ideas for further engaging alumni in ILRs global activities. In particular, the group talked about ways ILR and an already strong Korea member network can support the school's reach and impact in Asia.
Student internships, joint research projects, and faculty research exchanges were among several ideas that the group agreed could benefit both ILR and Korea's public and private sector research centers. Kuruvilla emphasized the importance of creating more international experiences for ILR students and the need to make them accessible to all students. Prior to the alumni meeting Kuruvilla presented to SK managers on outsourcing and on plural trade unions within firms. He also gave seminars at POSRI (the research institute of POSCO, a Korean steel maker) and at the Korea Labor Institute at the request of alumni at each location.
“It is always interesting to come back to Korea,” says Kuruvilla. “Not only are the labor relations issues important and worthy of study, but the chance to meet so many old students and alumni who are doing so well is especially rewarding.”