Dr. Kang Has Been Knighted!

KangThis fall brought in not only new students, but new faculty to the department. We would like to introduce one of those faculty members, Dr. Kyungkook Kang, who has joined us this semester. Just like the highly recommended book he suggested, “Against the Gods: The Remarkable Story of Risk” by Peter L. Bernstein, Dr. Kang is no stranger to taking risks.

After getting his Political Science BA from Yonsei University in Seoul, Korea, Kang went on to earn his MA in Economics and a Political Science and Economics Ph.D. from Claremont Graduate University, located in a small city in California about 35 miles east of downtown Los Angeles before coming to the University of Central Florida.

“Claremont Graduate University is the oldest and one of the smallest all-graduate institutions in the U.S. The west coast university is home to only about one thousand on-campus students. It’s exactly the opposite of UCF!” states Dr. Kang. He goes on to add how he was attracted to UCF’s reputation as the second largest university in the country, “There’s a real challenge and thrill in that. Plus, you can’t beat the location!”

Before teaching at UCF, he taught various graduate courses on research methods and security studies at Claremont Graduate University and the University of Southern California. His academic works has appeared in journals such as International Studies Quarterly and International Interactions, and several book chapters.

When asked why he chose to become a professor of Political Science, Kang says:

“It is a true privilege to be able to influence future educators and researchers. I was fortunate to have several wonderful mentors in my educational experience who instilled a high standard for research and teaching.”

You can see how Dr. Kang pays homage to his mentors’ influences as he prepares for classes in the spring. “I will teach one undergraduate and one graduate research methods class next semester.” He is currently working on calculation models, which requires him to deal with building game-theoretic models of WMD deterrence and the political economy models of post-war recovery process. His goal is “to create mathematical models to help people understand interstate conflict processes better.”

When questioned on what profession he would have pursued if he wasn’t a political scientist, Dr. Kang replied: “When I started high school, I thought I would be a physician (MD, not Ph.D,). I actually finished my pre-med preparation course in high school and applied to medical school once.”

With so much experience and accomplishments under his belt, Dr. Kang has “u-knighted” with us here at the University of Central Florida in the Political Science department. Referencing Canadian singer Michael Buble’s “Haven’t Met You Yet” as the song of his life, Kang confesses: “My life has been full of magical things, patiently waiting and surprising me.”

We hope the magic and surprises continue here with the UCF Knights as we welcome Dr. Kyungkook Kang to our campus!

Comments are closed.