Career Possibilities

As one of Korea’s leading graduate schools devoted to the study of international affairs, our graduates are employed in various sectors ranging from the multilateral to the private. GSIS, with the assistance of the SNU Career Development Center, actively supports students to obtain the career opportunity they wish to pursue. Presented below is the employment statistics for the two recent graduating classes as well as some interviews from our past graduates. Even in these challenging times, GSIS graduates have successfully grasped the attention of employers in and outside of Korea. Although the private sector continues to attract the largest percentage of our graduates, we are very fortunate to see growth in other sectors as well.

Employment Statistics

  • Public Sector: Government posts, public corporation, government-affiliated organizations, etc.
  • Private Sector: Large corporations, media enterprises, foreign enterprises, multinational corporations, etc.
  • Banking & Finance: Consulting firms, banks, stock trading firms, accounting firms, etc.
  • Education: Professors, secondary educators, lecturers, etc.
  • International Organizations: OECD, UNESCO, etc.
  • Further Study: Doctorate programs in Korea or abroad
  • Think Tanks: Research positions at institutions such as KDI, KIEP
Contact :
- Location: Room 301, Bldg.140-1, GSIS.
- Tel: 822-880-8509
- Email:

Alumni Interview

  • Mr. Jong-Hak Eun
  • '98 International Area Studies Major (Chinese Studies)
    Professor of Chinese Studies, School of International and Area Studies at Kookmin University


I entered GSIS in 1998 as a Chinese Area Studies major. Korea was going through some difficult times during that period due to the Asian financial crisis. What I heard at my orientation session was that there would be substantial reduction in scholarships due to the crisis. I felt sorry for my wife and daughter who encouraged me to leave the newspaper company for further study at GSIS-SNU. Even with such difficulties that I had to go through, days I spent at GSIS remain as unforgettable memories and still serves as the bedrock of my intellectual curiosity. I still appreciate my professors and colleagues for the numerous discussions and life advices in and out of classes. Administrative staff members were also kind enough to help me, a late learner, get used to the school life. I remember my daughter and I planted a little tree at a corner of the GSIS building on a holiday wishing the tree and GSIS would flourish together in the future. After graduating, I worked as a researcher in LG Economic Research Institute and went to Tsinghua University in China pursuing a doctoral degree. After finishing the Ph.D. degree, I worked for Korea Institute for International Economic Policy (KIEP) for a year. I am currently a professor of Chinese Studies, School of International and Area Studies at Kookmin University. I hope that you too can experience such adventure at GSIS-SNU.

  • Mr. Jaesung Lee
  • '99 International Cooperation Major
    Legal Officer, International Trade Law Division, Office of Legal Affairs, United Nations


A turning point in my life was when I got my first glasses and was finally able to see what the teacher was writing on the chalkboard. Being a student at GSIS (then GIAS) was a similar experience in that my perspectives on the world, more specifically, on international affairs, were formed and corrected with the guidance of excellent professors and through interaction with colleagues from diverse backgrounds. Just like the glasses that I put on every day, my GSIS lenses are essential in my everyday life, more importantly at work, where harmonizing different legal views is my main task. The interdisciplinary curriculum at GSIS was particularly helpful as it allowed me to study international law from different viewpoints. This was crucial in furthering my studies in the field of international trade law at SNU, NYU and Harvard. Academic yet pragmatic approach, prevalent during my studies at GSIS, steered me to focus on practical aspects underlying any specific issue, which became an asset in pursuing my career at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade and now, at the United Nations. Had it not been for my days at GSIS, I would definitely not be where I am now. But being a GSIS graduate, I know that there is so much more to dream.

  • Ms. Chanmi Kim
  • '07 International Cooperation Major
    2009 Junior Professional Officer (JPO), United Nations


Having entered GSIS with no background in political science or international affairs, I found that GSIS was a good starting point for a career in international organizations. The coursework, particularly those related to international organizations including the United Nations, transnational issues, security concerns, and conflict management, helped me acquire the background knowledge necessary to understanding the nuances and challenges of the field I wished to pursue. The program is comprehensive yet flexible enough for students to concentrate their studies on their specific areas of interest, allowing me to specialize even within my major. I was also privileged to study under the supervision of a talented faculty who offered valuable advice and encouraged me to develop a conscientious eye. At GSIS, my classmates and I were able to hone our passion and energy, as well as obtain the knowledge necessary in order to live by the words of John Sloan Dickey, “The world’s troubles are your troubles.

  • Ms. Bharti Gupta
  • '04 International Commerce Major
    Assistant Manager, Samsung Electronics, Dubai U.A.E.


I am thankful for the time and expertise that the faculty of GSIS at SNU has provided me to be what I am today, to excel professionally in my career and to develop as an individual. Thank you!’ International Commerce program at GSIS, Seoul National University provided me with excellent skills to develop professionally and to learn more about Korea through interesting and innovative classes offered by experienced and internationally trained professors. Exposure to open discussions, debates, projects and presentations in an international environment under the surveillance of talented faculty helped me gain the most valuable assets required to enter and survive a multinational company - global prospective, international communication skills and problem solving skills. Courage and confidence built through the classes here challenged me to build position as a global leader and achieve acknowledgment irrespective of which part of the world I am in.
“Think locally, act globally.” My local knowledge of Korean language and culture combined with global expertise gained at GSIS, SNU, were the pillars of success for me to get my first job at a global MNC i.e. Samsung Electronics in India and now in Dubai, UAE. I believe if I can do it, anyone can.

  • Mr. Oleg Kiriyanov
  • '98 Korean Studies Major
    Special Correspondent of the International News Department
    Russian National Daily Rossiyskaya Gazeta


Though the GSIS opened its doors in 1997 the Korean studies department created for foreign students appeared only in 1998. So we were the first foreigners to study at the Institute.
Right before the beginning of the classes I was a bit worried. About ten students were studying in our department and everybody had different backgrounds and wanted different fields to specialize in: politics, economy, literature, linguistics, culture, etc. How can all of them be satisfied? Fortunately the system turned out to be quite flexible and every student had a chance to study his or her favorite subject. At the same time we felt as a part of the whole GSIS community and Korean students were really good friends of us. Actually, I can even say that I did not feel as a foreigner - just a student like everybody else.
Before entering GSIS I graduated from the international relations department at SNU and professors at GSIS seemed to be more flexible. Well, probably there was another reason for that: we were now graduate students and not yesterday’s schoolchildren and it is always easier to pay special attention to the group of ten students than to a class of 50-60 students. Anyway, conversations with the professors both formal in classrooms and informal with a glass of beer or a cup of coffee somewhere outside of the institute are among unforgettable memories from GSIS. After graduation, I became a journalist and realized that besides the knowledge on inter-Korean relations and Korean politics, which by the way was my major at GSIS, GSIS had given me one of the most valuable assets - friends that helped and kept helping me in both professional and personal spheres.
When I returned to Korea 4 years later after graduation, I was surprised and pleased to see many of my classmates at the press-conferences. Some of them became politicians, some work for famous companies, some passed difficult exams and work for different ministries in government and many became like me, journalists. We chose different career paths and many of us live or work in different countries but we all remember that we have the same alma mater - the GSIS, SNU.

  • Ms. Mira Jung
  • '06 International Area Studies Major (European Studies)
    Staff, Finance Team, KIA Motors Deutschland GmbH, Germany


I have built up my career for working in automobile industry. After graduation, I have been working at finance team in KIA Motors Deutschland GmbH as a finance specialist.
Automobile industry is an aggregate model that shows a nation’s level of technology and competitiveness in international market. Although Korea is a latecomer in auto industry compared to BMW or Mercedes- Benz, it is equipped with high competitiveness in global perspective. With warm and kind help from professors and colleagues, I investigated growth paths of multinational companies in automobile industry and deepened my thesis study dealing with foreign direct investment (FDI) and automobile enterprises. While focusing on automobile industry, KITA (2007) got interested in my thesis, and I was fortunately given an opportunity to work in Germany’s automobile company through an internship program provided by GSIS-SNU and KIEP.
Experiencing long and deep recession caused by world financial crisis placed me in a difficult situation. I had to just sit and watch my colleagues get fired, and also had to survive at my work. However, tough group projects with wide range of people from diverse backgrounds in GSIS were invaluable asset to me in reaching possible practical solution with confidence. The financial crisis challenged me and made me grow even more.
In Germany while I was working, I was so proud of seeing Korean cars on German roads such as Cee’d (an European exclusive model of KIA Motors), i10, i20(European exclusive models of Hyundai Motor company) and Matiz (in the name of Chevrolet). I felt that I was spreading Korean auto industry. I hope I can become a role model for future GSIS students as a friend who makes her dreams come true. From my story, I hope you also realize how broad the world is at GSIS SNU and become an international player with a global outlook.

  • Ms. Marcela Ochoa
  • '08 Department of International Development Policy
    International Cooperation Agency from the Presidency, Colombia


Being a student of International Development Policy (IDP) in GSIS was a great experience. IDP is a new program in GSIS and is sponsored by KOICA, the International Cooperation Agency of Korea. The program is for government officials from developing countries, and I am one of them.
I work for the International Cooperation Agency from the Presidency of Colombia and I wanted to broaden my scope of Knowledge. In GSIS I was able to learn many things related to development; especially the Korean experience to reach a rapid economic development. Nevertheless, what was more exciting was the opportunity to share with people from different countries, cultures, and learn from professors from world recognized universities. Moreover, I learned about Korea, its culture and traveled a great deal around the country.
IDP had a great impact in my career. Now, I am one of the few people from my country who have had the opportunity to study in one of the best universities in Asia (the best in Korea), and learn about development from Korea, which has a very recent experience in development. The professors have experienced the actual developmental process and are first hand reference. That gives the students hope and real examples on how to make good policies for a rapid growth.
I am confident that this opportunity I had in Korea will also be fruitful to enhance the relations among both countries and worthy to my career success.