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SK Future Hall, a beacon for future higher education
  • Writer : KU TODAY
  • Hits : 899
  • Date : 2018-09-18

KU The Future
SK Future Hall, a beacon for future higher education


Korea University will soon open SK Future Hall as a space for educating the creative leaders of the future. Now under construction, the hall is scheduled to be completed next year. It will be a platform for the creation of new knowledge, not for didactic education, reflecting the educational philosophy of Korea University that “the talented people of the future should be instilled with an instinct for problem-solving.” KU President Jaeho Yeom said, “Many argue that education is ‘labor’ and an arduous process. However, studying is about ‘curiosity’. When curiosity is stimulated, even hard work can be incredibly rewarding. The word 'education' is derived from ‘educe’, meaning ‘to bring out’. Therefore, education is about the extent to which we can draw out the potential each person has, not the teaching of a defined quantity of knowledge.”

A creative space that maximizes student attention and immersion in learning

SK Future Hall is expected to bring about innovation in higher education. Celebrating the 111th anniversary of Korea University, the building consists of 111 seminar rooms and 111 individual study rooms, thus creating a culture in which students study autonomously and come together to debate and discuss stimulating issues.

In SK Future Hall, a tutorial system as well as the flipped classroom principle, through which students listen to online lectures and discuss them in small groups in the seminar rooms, will be established. Students will also be able to learn not just by engaging in discussions but also by efforts of their own in the individual study rooms. Moreover, places such as the Agora, designed with communication and collaboration in mind, and the Living Lab, a creative hothouse, will be established for the first time on a university campus in Korea. These spaces, designed not for students to occupy individually but to share, will be open 24 hours a day to promote the creation of new knowledge.

A space for communication where tradition and progress exist in harmony

SK Future Hall's site embraces the Auditorium, which is a historic space in Korean intellectual life. It forms a bilateral symmetry with Centennial Memorial Hall and the Main Hall. The symmetrical triangular structure that SK Future Hall completes symbolizes the national spirit and the vision of the future of Korea University.

SK Future Hall adopted its motif from the Agora, the plaza in ancient Athens where creative impulses and knowledge were shared and discussed. The hall is intended to embody the spirit of the Agora by assuming its role as a center of politics, economics and art. The Community Plaza, with its glass roof, was designed to accommodate more than 700 people who will come together for various types of communication, through being connected to the existing Auditorium. Just as the ancient Greek plaza was where the wisdom of the community was shared and celebrated, SK Future Hall, as the new plaza of Korea University, will become an Agora that promotes interdisciplinary studies and leads the way toward a future of creativity in the era of innovative modes of learning.

Moreover, the hall will complete the master plan of the central axis of the KU campus and will utilize energy-efficient and environmental-friendly products such as cutting edge ICT technologies, an advanced building energy management system, a geothermal system, and LED lighting.

Spot Interview – Jung sik Kong, Vice President for Campus Planning: “Space is the medium in which we communicate and bring ideas to fruition together.”

Q. The KU campus has undertaken a recreation of its space over the past three years. What ideas does Korea University want to convey through these new structures?

We carry on the spirit of Seoktap (granite tower) of our traditional buildings, particularly the Main Hall, the West Hall and the Graduate School Building, while the newly constructed buildings reinforce future-oriented values compatible with the cultivation of pioneering intellectuals.

Q. What commonalities do the spaces of KU π-ville, CJ Creator Library (CCL) and SK Future Hall have?

SK Future Hall is a space designed to bring about innovation in education. The hall will be a place where students explore issues that don't lend themselves to simple answers, engage in open-ended discussions and concentrate on thinking through issues with nuance and creativity. KU π-ville is a space where students freely share, express and experiment with ideas, thus expanding their creativity and imagination. π-ville is designed to facilitate group activities more than individual efforts. The CJ Creator Library (CCL) allows students to engage in free-flowing communication in a wide and welcoming space, instead of in separate rooms. The CCL is a place where one-to-many communication occurs through sole producer media, when one person designs, films and posts content on his or her own. We expect that each of these spaces will inspire students to explore ideas, experiment with them and expand on them in a natural process. These places are a part of our endeavors to transform the KU campus into a flexible hothouse of knowledge generation, as it evolves from a space of knowledge transfer.

Q. What is the function of SK Future Hall?

Two main functions are integrated in SK Future Hall. The exterior of the building reflects ancient architectural traditions while the interior functions as a facility for future-oriented education. This building is the optimal space for flipped classes such as “Liberty, Justice, Truth”, a common culture course which was introduced this year. The seminar rooms are of various sizes and the individual study rooms allow students to engage in open-ended discussion and to immerse themselves in self-directed learning. For problem-solving classes, tables and chairs are arranged for group work and online devices are installed on each table so that students can access a wealth of information and solve problems. In addition, as these rooms can communicate with any other seminar rooms in real time, they are not temporally or spatially bounded by their walls.

Q. What symbolic meanings does SK Future Hall suggest?

SK Future Hall symbolizes the future-oriented principles of Korea University's educational focus, reflecting its philosophy of fostering pioneering intellectuals who are active in examining and resolving pressing social and practical issues. Moreover, large scale lectures will be arranged in the Auditorium in order to preserve its historic role as a space where many people gathered to share knowledge together. Smaller discussions will also take place in SK Future Hall, thus connecting the traditions and the future of the KU campus. SK Future Hall faced concerns about its direction in the planning stage. However, I hope that ultimately, the hall will become a symbol of reconciliation and integration, for the purpose of which we have come together in designing this space.


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