Oct. 12, 2007
It is a long way from Rice to Korea, but that is where Hoony Shin spent the summer of his sophomore year.
As an economics and managerial studies major, he joined a group that was helping the South Korean government with its economic policies. Last summer he worked as an intern at Wachovia Securities, assiting companies finance their business transactions, and plans to join them after graduation.
For Hoony, these two experiences reflect how his time at Rice has changed his life.
"When I came in as a freshman," he says, "I didn't know much about anything. Now as a senior about to graduate I feel like I have a good grasp about how things work in the world." Some of this perspective has come from the tennis team, which has players from many countries.
"Playing on the Rice tennis team has been amazing," says Hoony, "a great experience all around." In addition, he notes an added benefit: watching Rice's Julie Chao play.
Hoony has found his courses at Rice to be challenging and rewarding. Interactions with Rice faculty and the support of other students and his coaches all enriched his Rice experience. He is particularly grateful to his coaches. Hoony says they not only wanted his success on court, they wanted his success in life.
When he was struggling with some personal challenges, his coaches kept in close touch, giving him encouragement and support. He also learned from them that "whether on the tennis court or other parts of your life, hard work will take you a lot of places."
And Hoony has clearly taken this advice to heart. He has not only worked hard in the classroom and on his game, he has also been involved in the tennis team clothing drives and food drives at Houston Food Bank last Thanksgiving.
When he came to Rice from Katy Taylor High School in Houston, Hoony knew of Rice's reputation as the premier university in the South. Now that he has spent four years at Rice, he says he understands the basis for that regard.
He feels very well prepared to undertake his career in finance at Wachovia. But he is already thinking ahead to business school in a few years (probably in California) and then starting his own hedge fund company.
His teammates and classmates who know him well expect that with his preparation and determination, he will follow that plan. He will be one of Tomorrow's Leaders.