Dongguk Univ. President
By Kang Shin-who
The “tradition” of beating junior students training to become police officers has raised its ugly head again.
According to sources from Dongguk University, Seoul, senior students of the university’s Police Administration Department attacked a group of their juniors last Monday, similar to brutal cases of violence that have often occurred in the past.
“This kind of violence continues to occur. It is nonsense. Our society is very insensitive to violence as seen in the case where Chey Chul-won, a younger cousin of SK Group Chairman Chey Tae-won, beat up a laborer and other cases where parents hit their children and teachers assault students,” said Ahn jin-geol, director of the social economic policy division at the People’s Solidarity for Participatory Democracy.“I hope violence of the strong on the weak disappears following this ugly case,” he added.
The students in their 3rd year called in 14 male students who failed to attend a judo evaluation session at a gymnasium on the school campus, and hit them 10 to 30 times on the thighs using wooden clubs. The senior students reportedly said they inflicted the physical punishment in order to boost discipline within the department.
In a telephone call, school officials admitted that it was an unimaginable case. “We are currently looking into the case and plan to punish those who are involved. However, we never tried to conceal the case as reported,” said a media official of the university.
All professors of the police administration department at the university also released a formal apology. “It is a really shocking and backward situation created by a few aggressive senior students. We understand this is very serious and regret this,” the professors said in the statement. “We will take measures so that this kind of case never happens again especially at the police administration department.”
The faculty members of the department also promised to increase counseling services, which will be arranged to deal with students’ difficulties. They will also change curricula in order to strengthen personal education programs and host a meeting with the parents of students more than twice a year.
However, the victimized sophomore students claim that school staffers were trying to cover up the case, although they reported the incident to assistant teachers. They also said that their seniors gave them a hard time such as forcing them to do push-ups. Ten female students were also present, but they were not maltreated like their male counterparts.
동국대 경찰행정학과 교수진 전원 폭행사건 공식사과
고질적인 선후배간의 구타사건이 동국대에서 발생해 물의를 빚고 있다. 동국대에 따르면, 지난 6일, 이 학교 경찰행정학과의 3학년 학생들이 유도 승급심사에 참여하지 않았다는 이유로 2학년 남학생 14명을 집단으로 폭행하는 사건이 발생했다. 선배 학생들은 후배들의 허벅지를 각목으로 10-30 차례 때린 것으로 알려졌다.
사건이 발생한지 4일만인 10일, 학과 교수진 전원은 공식 사과했다. 교수들은 사과의 말씀'을 통해 "저희 학과 3학년 일부 학생이 후배 학생들에게 심각한 폭행을 가한 전근대적이고 매우 충격적인 사건에 학과 교수 일동은 그 심각성을 깊이 인식하고 매우 송구스럽게 생각한다"고 밝혔다.
이어 "피해 학생들과 학부모님께 충심으로 사과 드리며, 이러한 폭행 사건이 앞으로 동국대에서, 특히 경찰행정학과에서 재발하지 않도록 조치를 하겠다"는 말도 덧붙였다.
참여연대의 안진걸 사회경제 국장은 "최근 최철원이 노동자를 매값을 주고 때리는 사건을 비롯해 부모가 자식을, 교사가 학생을, 선배가 후배를 때리는 사건이 빈번히 발생하다 보니 우리 사회가 정말 폭력에 둔감하다." 며 이번 동국대 폭행 사건을 계기로 사회 강자의 약자에 대한 폭력이 없어졌으면 한다"고 말했다.