George Mason University Korea is a global, extended campus of George Mason University. Its activities are accountable through normal university structures to the university’s President and Board of Visitors. As an international extended campus, George Mason University Korea also has its own leadership structure to ensure responsive and knowledgeable management that is compatible with the regulations and guidelines established by the Ministry of Education of South Korea. Academic oversight of programs offered at the Korean campus occurs exclusively through normal university structures. Routine financial and administrative management is also carried out through the office of the President of George Mason University and the leadership team.
Dr. Steven K. Lee was appointed Founding President of George Mason University Korea in July of 2015. President Lee serves as the chief executive officer, responsible for the overall planning, administration, and success of the university. President Lee’s leadership and scholarly experience spans 30 years at several major universities in the U.S., including the University of California and campuses in California State University. Prior to assuming the helm at George Mason University Korea, he was Founding Director and CEO of USC Korea in Seoul. President Lee presently holds the title of Distinguished Professor at George Mason University. This is his second presidency in an American university.
Under President Lee’s leadership, five divisions, each headed by a dean, have been created, both the number of academic program offerings and the faculty and staff FTE have more than doubled, and student enrollment has increased more than ten-fold since the campus opening. In addition, institutional, government, and corporate partnership agreements have increased to over 40. President Lee also has assembled a 40+ member President’s Advisory Board and serves as the Chair of the Board. In 2017, President Lee received the “2017 CEO of the Year” award from the Institute for Policy Studies and was inducted into Korea’s CEO Hall of Fame for his dedication to global and diversity education.
A champion of diversity, equity, and global education, President Lee serves on a number of boards, including the Chadwick International School, the Foundation for Korean Language and Culture, and the Incheon Global Campus Foundation. He served as an advisor to various commissions and organizations in the U.S., including the Commission on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, the U.S. Department of Education Office of English Language Acquisition, and the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing. Among his leadership roles were serving as President of the Association for Asian Pacific American Leadership in Education and the Asian Pacific American Faculty and Staff Association. He also was the Founding Director of the Urban Education Center in Los Angeles, dedicated to serving inner city and minority students. President Lee received his doctorate from the University of Southern California (USC) and his graduate and undergraduate degrees from the University of Washington (UW).
Dr. Daniel Walsch joined George Mason University Korea in 2015. Dr. Walsch serves as the Chief of Staff and as the Dean of External Relations. With over 40 years of professional experience, Dean Walsch is a published author, accredited public relations practitioner (APR), and honored instructor, supervisor and communication professional. He holds academic appointments in the fields of communication and business. In addition, he has an extensive knowledge of higher education, office management, media relations, speech writing, public speaking organizational spokesmanship, and audience/client development. Dean Walsch earned his doctorate in communication at George Mason University, his M.A. in communication degree at Towson University, his M.Ed. degree at Bowie University, and his B.S, degree in Journalism at the University of Tennessee. Dean Walsch is the author of 11 books and maintains a blog, Why Communication Matters (www.myskeets.blogspot), that has been recognized as one of the top 30 blogs on communication on the Internet.
John T. Crist joined George Mason University Korea as Dean of Academic Affairs in Fall 2016. Dean Crist previously served as the Director of Research at Georgetown University School of Foreign Service in Qatar from 2011 to 2015, as well as Associate Director of Research at the Center for International and Regional Studies and Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs (2007-2011). Before embarking on his career in international higher education, Dr. Crist spent 14 years in the Washington foreign policy community administering and leading the fellowship programs of the Jennings Randolph Program for International Peace as Associate Vice President at the U.S. Institute of Peace, a think-tank funded by the U.S. Congress. For the past 30 years, he has taught courses in sociology, social movements, and peace and conflict studies at institutions such as Georgetown University (the M.A. in Conflict Resolution Program in Washington, D.C. and the School of Foreign Service in Qatar), Johns Hopkins University’s School for Advanced International Studies in Washington, D.C., Syracuse University’s Program on the Analysis and Resolution of Conflicts, Colgate University’s Peace Studies Program, and The Catholic University of America’s Department of Sociology. Dean Crist has published widely in social movements, peace and conflict studies, and more recently, on international higher education. His latest work includes chapters for an edited volume on The Century of Science: The Global Triumph of the Research University, winner of the 2017 Association for the Study of Higher Education (ASHE) Award for Significant Research on International Higher Education. From 2012-2015, Dr. Crist was co-Principal Investigator leading a large multi-national research team that assembled and analyzed data about global scientific journal article production between 1900-2011. (This project was funded by the Qatar National Research Fund.) Dr. Crist received his Ph.D. and M.A. from the Program on the Analysis and Resolution of Conflicts in the Maxwell School at Syracuse University and completed his undergraduate degree in sociology at the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.
Dr. Min Park comes from George Mason University in Fairfax. Dr. Park serves as Dean of Administration, responsible for overall oversight of professional staff as well as leading the Office of Government Relations and Institutional Partnerships (GRIP), Office of Facilities Management, and the Office of IT Services. Dean Park also works in concert with the Dean of Academic Affairs in developing institutional policies and practices and with the C.F.O. in fiscal planning. Dean Park additionally acts as the liaison to GMU Fairfax on administrative matters. Dean Park held the position of Acting Assistant Vice President for International Campus Operations since 2014 and as tenured Associate Professor in the College of Education and Human Services since 2012. From the outset of planning for the Korea campus some six years ago, Dean Park played an active and leadership role in conducting a range of activities–from coordinating feasibility studies to preparing and developing proposals for accreditation from the Korea Ministry of Education. She also was the team leader in establishing relations with various organizations and agencies, including the Ministry of Technology, Industry, and Energy, Incheon Free Economic Zone Authority, and the Incheon Global Campus Foundation. Dean Park received her Ph.D. from Texas A&M University, her M.S. from Pennsylvania State University and her M.A. from Hanyang University.
Yorgun Marcel is the newly appointed Dean of Students at George Mason University Korea. Dean Marcel comes to GMU Korea after having served for 5 years as the Assistant Dean of Students, Director of International student affairs, and Managing Director of the Center for Diversity and Inclusion at the College of Wooster, in Ohio. Prior to his time in Ohio, Dean Marcel was the Director of Intercultural Programs at Buena Vista University in Iowa for 3 years, and the Director of Student Activities with the College of Santa Fe in New Mexico for 4 years. In 2016, Dean Marcel was the Region IV (Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky) nominee for NAFSA’s (Association of International Educators) Rising Star National award. While still a graduate student, Dean Marcel served as graduate assistant to the office of multicultural student services. He was elected to the SCSU student government, and appointed as its cultural diversity representative to the Minnesota State University Student Association (MSUSA). The following year, Dean Marcel was elected as Chairman and C.E.O of MSUSA representing the 70,000 students in the MnSCU system, and became the first international student to hold the position. Dean Marcel earned his Master’s in International Communications from St. Cloud State University in Minnesota and his Bachelor of Arts at Cal State University Dominguez Hills in Carson, CA where he majored in Mass Communications.
Aaron Lyvers joined George Mason University Korea in July of 2016. Mr. Lyvers acts as the CFO and Controller, and has an oversight responsibility of the Division of Finance and Planning, which includes Finance, Human Resources, and Institutional Planning. He also provides critical executive level support and consultation to the leadership team and acts as liaison between the university and outside taxing organizations and agencies and to the GMU Fairfax Financial team. Mr. Lyvers comes to GMU Korea from Carnegie Mellon University Qatar, where he initially held the position of Finance Manager, then Director of Finance, and for the last three years as Senior Director of Finance. While at CMU-Q, his accomplishments included designing and implementing grant research programs, leading the university to successful audits from 2007, and securing multimillion dollar budgets to support degree programs. Mr. Lyvers holds an MBA from Thunderbird School of Global Management and a BBA degree from James Madison University.