Keun Y. Kim and Sanok P. Kim Graduate Scholarships

Two new funds established at the University of Wisconsin–Madison

MADISON, WI (October 17, 2018) — The University of Wisconsin Foundation proudly announces the creation of two new funds to celebrate the lives of Keun Young Kim (MS’56 PhD’59) and Sanok P. Kim (MA’58).

In 1954, Keun escaped war-torn Korea, landed in America with $50 in his pocket, and made his way to Madison. The University of Wisconsin had offered him a full scholarship and teaching award, allowing him to pursue his dream of studying chemical engineering. After earning his master’s degree and PhD, he went on to have an illustrious 41-year career as a chemical engineer at Monsanto in St. Louis, where he reached the level of Fellow and contributed to research that led to the filing of numerous patents.

Sanok also came to America to escape the war in Korea and to pursue her education. She received her bachelor’s degree in romance languages with high honors from Clark University in Worcester, Massachusetts. She was then offered a full scholarship and teaching assistantship in romance languages at the University of Wisconsin, where she received her MA degree in 1958. After starting a family, she earned an MS degree in library science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and worked for 29 years at Washington University’s Olin Library, beginning as a part-time cataloger and rising to become a librarian supervisor responsible for technical training for new staff.

Both Keun and Sanok have always been deeply appreciative of the University of Wisconsin–Madison for the opportunities they received. It has been their wish to give back to the university that had given them generous scholarships and made it possible for them to pursue their graduate educations.

The Keun Y. and Sanok P. Kim Graduate Scholar in Chemical and Biological Engineering Fund will provide scholarships to outstanding graduate students in the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering. “Awards like this are essential components of our success at recruiting the top graduate students in the nation and in the world to the University of Wisconsin. The impact of the Kims’ gift will strengthen the department for years to come,” says Chemical and Biological Engineering Chair Regina Murphy.

The Keun Y. and Sanok P. Kim Graduate Scholar in Library Studies Fund will provide scholarship support to graduate students within the Information School. “The Kims’ generous gift will strengthen the Information School’s ability to recruit talented future professionals. Generations of students as well as the communities they serve will benefit,” says Information School Director Kyung-Sun Kim.

The Kims’ oldest child, Kenneth Kim, a physician and entrepreneur explains, “My sister and I felt it would be a great way to give back to the University of Wisconsin while honoring our parents by establishing these scholarships for future students in perpetuity.”

Pauline Kim, a professor of law at Washington University in St. Louis, adds, “My parents always were so grateful for the opportunities they received in America, and specifically to the University of Wisconsin for providing them with great educations that allowed them to establish successful careers in this country.”

Both of these funds will continue in perpetuity and support generations of Badgers. Those who wish to make additional contributions can visit for the Keun Y. and Sanok P. Kim Graduate Scholar in Library Studies Fund.

Media Information

Contact: Tod Pritchard,, 608-609-5217, @WisAlumni