Board of Advisors
Sarah Bunton, Ph.D.
Sarah received her Ph.D. in Educational Policy, Administration, and Leadership; her M.A. in Educational Psychology; and her B.A. in Psychology. She has over two decades of experience as a researcher, administrator, and college-level educator in educational and non-profit organizations centered on facilitating student, faculty, and organizational success. She is currently Research Director at a higher education non-profit where her research and teaching interests include educational equity, social change, leadership development, faculty engagement, and organizational capacity-building. She publishes and presents on these topics regularly. Sarah is committed to the mission of Sejong Academy and the important and unique niche in educational opportunities that it provides. Sarah previously served on the Board of Directors for the school.
Julie was a founding member of Sejong Academy’s Board of Directors where she contributed her expertise leading up to and including the school’s opening in 2014. Julie continued to contribute to Sejong Academy by serving on the Board while her children were enrolled in the school. She has an extensive background in teaching English as a second or foreign language, is a lifetime learner of 4 languages herself, including Korean, and has numerous connections to the Twin Cities Korean community.
Hangtae Cho, PhD
After completing his BA (English Education) and MA (English Linguistics) from Korea University, Hangtae came to the University of Minnesota, where he earned his Ph.D. in linguistics. It was during his graduate years that his academic interests turned to Korean language education and has led the University of Minnesota’s effort to establish a non-heritage based Korean program from scratch. He subsequently developed a strong interest in Korean language pedagogy, proficiency-oriented foreign language instruction and second language assessment, sociolinguistics, North Korean dialects and phonology general. He worked in collaboration to revise the second edition of KLEAR Integrated Korean Textbook Series. As a language assessment expert, he has been awarded several language assessment and curriculum development projects funded by National Foreign Language Center. He has served on Executive Committee for the Center for Advanced Research in Language Acquisition and the Committee on Second Language Education at the University of Minnesota. He is also serving on the task force for AATK Standards-based College Curriculum Development Project and sitting on Board of Directors for AATK. He is currently Director of Korean Department of Asian Languages and Literature, University of MN.
Shannon Peterson began her career in education in 1986, as a high school English teacher. She moved to Germany to teach at the Frankfurt International School for several years. In 1993, she earned an MA in ESL, focusing on Second Language Acquisition, at the University of Hawaii. While pursuing her degree, she also received a fellowship from the US Department of Education to study language immersion on Maui. In 2012, she earned her administrative licensure from Johns Hopkins University via an international, online program supported by the International Society for Technology in Education, completing her MN practicum through St. Cloud State University. Shannon is currently the Director of Lakes International Language Academy (LILA), an elementary school in Forest Lake, MN, which she helped found in 2004. LILA is an authorized International Baccalaureate World school with immersion tracks in Spanish and Chinese. The school serves over 700 students, K - 6, and is a tuition-free public charter school.
Jim Robinson, Ph.D.
Jim Robinson, Board Member, is a second/foreign language educator with almost forty years of experience, as a teacher, teacher educator, and program leader. His education began with degrees from the University of Kansas in History and East Asian Studies and continued with graduate degrees in Anthropology and Applied Linguistics at Stanford University. Jim began his Korean connections as a Peace Corps volunteer where he taught at Hapcheon Middle School, the Ulsan Board of Education and the Korean Educational Development Institute over a 4-year period of time. He also received a Fulbright dissertation grant and spent an additional year collecting data on self-fulfilling prophecies in a Korean elementary school. Currently, Jim is the TESL Director at St. Cloud State University where he directs TESL degree and licensure programs and teaches courses in teaching methodology, culture in the classroom, and ethnographic research methods for undergraduate and graduate students preparing to be ESL, foreign language, and Chinese immersion teachers for both K-12 and adult classrooms. Jim has written and published articles on intercultural communication within the classroom with special emphasis on crossing cultures from the US to Korea and has connected St. Cloud State to 3 Korean Universities with student and faculty exchanges as well as for dual degree programs. Jim lives mostly in St. Cloud with his wife, Kyoungae. One of their two adult children lives in Seoul, Korea and the other in St. Cloud.
Jisu is a certified teacher in South Korea, received her B.A. in Korean Language and Literature Education from Seoul National University and her M.A. in Educational Leadership and Policy from the University of Michigan. As an educator, she has taught Korean Language to both heritage and non-heritage students for several years. In South Korea, she has taught Korean language and literature at the public high school and developed multi-level curricula for a wide range of students. After moving to the United States, she has taught Korean as a second language in two different Korean schools. She also trained other teachers in Korean linguistics and pedagogy, and led teachers in implementing the Korean Language exam that covered both heritage and non-heritage students. As a researcher, her interests lie in school organizations and school leadership. During her M.A, she examined the framework of educational infrastructure for nine nations, and analyzed what elements of those infrastructures are correlated to high student achievement in order to gain insight into what factors build strong school organizations and educational systems. She is currently Program Manager of Educator Assessment and Data Analysis at Washington State Professional Educator Standards Board.
Scott served as a founding school board member of Sejong Academy. Since 1992, Scott has enjoyed a variety of professional experiences that have allowed him to work with all types of students. He worked as a Behavior Specialist in a day treatment program, a juvenile counselor for Operation De Novo in Minneapolis and as a 5th and 6th grade teacher in the St. Paul Public schools. In addition, Scott has served as an elementary school principal in St. Paul Public Schools, in the Columbia Heights Public School system and as an interim principal in the Pine Island Public schools. Scott's formal education has taken place at three different levels: an undergraduate degree from St. Cloud State University with an emphasis in Applied Psychology; a Master’s degree from the University of St. Thomas with an emphasis in Elementary education; and finally, a K- 12 Administration degree/license from the University of St. Mary’s of Minnesota. Scott is also formally certified to facilitate Responsive Classroom® week-long trainings to teachers and has used the Responsive Classroom approach to teaching as a classroom teacher and principal for twelve years. Regardless of his role with students and families, Scott is deeply passionate about providing a world-class education for the young people he is so grateful to work with daily. He currently serves as ALC Principal in the Zumbro Education District in Byron Minnesota.