Hongik University opened its doors as a college in Seoul in 1946. By 1950, the school had expanded steadily so as to accommodate various departments in law, liberal arts, political science, and natural science. It was, however, forced to move to a temporary school housing in Pusan, a southern port city, at the advent of the Korean War. All programs were drastically cut back.
The next chapter of Hongik history began after the school returned to Seoul in
1953. Ever since, Hogik University grew in size and reputation, expanding academic programs such as the Departments of Business and Economics, Education, Engineering, Fine Arts, Handicrafts, as well as a Graduate School. The foundation also established Hongik Junior Technical College, Hongik Junior and Senior High Schools, Hongik Girls' Junior and Senior High Schools, and Hongik Elementary School. In 1971 Hongik College attained a new status, merging with Soo-Do Engineering College to form Hongik University, with twenty departments in the College of Business and Economics, Engineering, and Fine Arts. It was also in 1971 that the Graduate School of Industrial Arts came into being. Evening classes and the College of Education were added in 1972 and 1973, respectively. In 1981-82, the Ministry of Education authorized the establishment of the College of Liberal Arts, the Graduate School of Environmental Studies, and the Graduate School of Education.
The years 1986 through 1988 marked a period of further expansion in Hongik's educational programs. The Graduate School of International Business Administration and the College of Law & Economics were established. The Department of Art Science, the Department of Printmaking, and the Department of Visual Design were added to the College of Fine Arts. In addition, the Institute of Fine Arts & Design Education was set up to provide continuing education for adults.
In keeping pace with the growing student enrollment, a program of physical expansion was pursued. The Liberal Arts Building and the Computer Center were completed in 1983 and 1985, respectively, and the construction of the Gymnasium was completed at the end of 1985. Also, two student dormitories were constructed: the first one, a six-story building of 122 square meters, was built in 1988, and the other, a six-story building of 263 square meters with two underground floors, was built in 1989. In the same year, the auditorium, which had been damaged by a fire, was remodeled, resulting in a three-story building of 282 square meters.
The year 1989 marked another epoch in the history of Hongik University: The College of Industrial Sciences, comprising of eleven departments, was established at the second campus in Jochiwon, Chungcheongnam-do. The preparation for the second campus was initiated by the purchase of a plot of land covering 151,250 square meters in Jochiwon. On April 23, 1988, the first phase of construction, including the lecture buildings, gymnasium, auditorium, and dormitories started. Also, sports facilities for baseball, soccer, and tennis were added. All these efforts culminated into 11 buildings as of March, 1991.
Further expansion took place from 1991 to 1994, with more departments and colleges being added to the University. To list a few of the changes, the Department of Radio Science & Communication Engineering was established in the College of Engineering at the Seoul campus. The College of Industrial Sciences at the second campus was divided into the College of Science and Technology and the College of Visual Arts (now renamed the College of Design and Arts), where the latter included the Department of Industrial Crafts and the Department of Advertisement Design. The College of Business Management was also added during this period.
In 1995 and 1996, Hongik University underwent a major restructuring of the departments of the various colleges. Many departments exploring similar fields of study were merged into school systems, thereby allowing students to explore a wider spectrum of study. Additionally, three more graduate schools were established; the Graduate School of Industry at the Jochiwon campus and the Graduate School of Advertising and Public Relations and the Graduate School of Educational Management at the Seoul campus. Also, in 1995, the University began to expand globally, becoming sister universities with over 32 institutions world-wide, including those in the United States, China, Russia, Japan, the United Kingdom, Spain, Finland, and Australia, among others.
Hongik University has been, and still is, striving to provide the optimum academic environment to foster students' development of innovative thinking. In this light, the Hongik International Language Institute was established in 1997 to further support foreign language studies, so vital in this age of globalization. Also, the School of Advertising and Public Relations, the first of its kind in Korea, opened in 1998 to accommodate the ever-increasing demand for experts in this field in today's information society.
The creation of the Gangnam Art Center in 1999 and the establishment of the Daehakro Campus in Hyewha, the most frequented gathering place for youngsters, in 2002, were efforts to establish a system of lifelong education within Hongik University. There were other major happenings in 2002 as well: the Gyeonseong School Foundation was merged with our Hongik Foundation; a new campus was opened in Suwon, which is a city just adjacent to the south of Seoul; in Mallipo, which is situated on the west coast, we opened the Beach Training Center. In 2004, we established the Graduate School of Film & Design Media and the International Design school for Advanced Studies(IDAS) to educate and train future leaders of the digital media and international design era.
In 2005, We opend the Pace( Partners for the Advancement of Collaborative Engineering Education) Center , that is educational - industrial complex. We also opend Hongik Art Hall in Jochiwon campus.
In 2006, We celebrated the 60th anniversary of its founding and The Hongimunkwan was built at the main entrance.
Hongik University, offering comprehensive higher education to over 15 thousand students, will continue to make steady progress, growing both in size and quality. The University is striving, and will continue to strive, to bring about a standard of excellence in education and research.