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Author Topic:   Korean astronaut Soyeon Yi's post-KARI career
Robert Pearlman

Posts: 42988
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 06-26-2014 08:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Soyeon Yi, Korea's first and only astronaut to date, has announced she will retire from the Korea Aerospace Research Institute (KARI) in August to dedicate more time to family, the South Korean daily Dong-A Ilbo reported (via The Diplomat).
"I feel bad that I'm the one always blamed for the failure of the space business even though there are problems with government policy toward the space business," said Yi in her interview with Dong-A.

She also said she has been worrying about her future career as her duties have diminished.

In fact, Yi began pursuing an MBA degree at the University of California at Berkeley in 2012, causing widespread discontent among Koreans who thought Yi was abandoning the responsibilities she had accumulated from the vast investment South Korea's government had made in her.

In her new interview, Yi depicts her decision to pursue a graduate business degree as an integral part of her effort to advance South Korea's space program and science and technology efforts more generally.

"I realized that I should know how the market works if I want to contribute to the advancement of science and technology in Korea. To that end, I need to communicate with more people who are not in science field. That's why I decided to do [an] MBA," she said.

She added that she has been very busy over past two years with her graduate studies, but now she is trying to figure out her next move.

Hart Sastrowardoyo

Posts: 3445
From: Toms River, NJ
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 06-26-2014 08:58 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
"Only astronaut"? Whatever happened to Ko San? Not that the Russians are likely to fly him.


Posts: 2610
From: Brussels, Belgium
Registered: Dec 2000

posted 06-27-2014 01:15 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for eurospace   Click Here to Email eurospace     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
On her FB presence, Yi mentions she has finished her studies in California and has left for Washington state.


Posts: 199
From: UK
Registered: Jul 2004

posted 06-29-2014 04:10 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tonyq   Click Here to Email Tonyq     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
It's probably also relevant to mention that Soyeon got married last summer, she and her husband are now based in Seattle.

She is a highly qualified engineer, and as the Korean Astronaut project was always a dead-end with no further flights, it was inevitable that she would move on eventually.

Although there was an obvious post-flight contractual obligation, to promotional, and educational, activities around the World, I'd imagine that original committment has long expired.

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