Computers are magnificent tools for the realization of our dreams,
but no machine can replace the human spark of spirit,
compassion, love, and understanding.
Louis V. Gerstner, Jr.
One of the distinctives of Nyack College faculty is their special mix of compassion, love and understanding for the young men and women they educate.
The hunger and thirst for learning was also the “spark of spirit,” that drew Dr. Kwiryung Yun to the field of social work.
“Social work was very new when I started college in South Korea,” she explains. “Only four colleges or universities had a social work program. When I took one of the social work courses as an elective, I just fell in love with it. I think the title of the course was ‘Social Problems With a Focus on Income Inequality.’ At the same time, I was actively involved in my church ministry for the poor.”
The Nyack School of Social Work dean recalls her journey to becoming a practitioner of compassion. She took her interest a step further than just studying.
“I found myself actively developing questions about social issues, reading relevant literature and analyzing the data, and then putting it into writing for my classes. There was no internet during that time. We had to travel to the public library to get hard data. This kind of going the extra mile did not bother me because getting knowledge was a delight. It was natural for me to be on the path towards academia.
Earlier this month, Dr. Yun was notified by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), the national association representing social work education in the U.S., that accreditation for the bachelor’s and master’s degree programs at Nyack is reaffirmed through 2029.
As the observance of Social Work Month is soon ending, the dedicated efforts of Dr. Yun and her team of faculty is a cause for celebration. These men and women successfully fulfill the mission of sending out graduates who will take “the whole gospel to the whole world” by being the hands and feet of Jesus on earth, proudly wearing the mantle of Competent Compassionate Catalysts in Christ (CCCC).
What make her most proud of the social work degree programs at Nyack?
“Students and alumni. Our students come from all walks of life. They overcome many obstacles they have experienced and learn to grow personally and professionally. Our programs help students to integrate their personal faith with social work practice. They come to understand the concept of compassion demonstrated by Christ and practice compassion in their professional practice and personal lives.”
For Dean Yun, the mission is also accomplished when something very specific happens.
“I find joy when I see a big smile on students’ faces after struggling to understand a difficult concept and when they say they finally found the purpose and meaning of life. It is such a blessing to praise God for His faithfulness and goodness at our annual events, the Master of Social Work Hooding Ceremony and Nyack Connection with our alumni.”