The founding of SNU in 1946 marked the opening of the first national university in the modern Korean history. Originally, the university was composed of one graduate school and nine colleges, with 491 faculty members and 4,500 students. Today, the university is comprised of 16 colleges, 3 specialized graduate schools, 1 graduate school, and 141 research institutes as well as other supporting facilities with 5,361 faculty members and 28,011 students.
SNU has been ranked 35th in 2013 QS World University Rankings, 5th in producing CEOs worldwide according to a survey conducted by Ecole des Mines de Paris – MINES Paris Tech, and are now working towards becoming one of the top ten universities in the world by 2025.
CLS started as a long-term, innovative educational project in 2007. As of 2008 an establishment committee for SNU CLS was formed, and in 2009 The College of Liberal Studies was officially founded with the aim of promoting cultural and interdisciplinary studies. Professor Kyung-Ho SUH was appointed as the first dean and in March 2009, 157 students were admitted. In 2012, the college held its first commencement exercises. Now, approximately 874 students are pursuing the baccalaureate degree.
Unlike any other degree programs in Korea, CLS allows students to create their own major, which may encompass programs from both the sciences the arts. The degree thus offers the opportunity for students to design majors according to their special need and interest. Students will eventually graduate with Bachelor’s in the College of Liberal Studies.
CLS students study specially designed interdisciplinary courses created to enhance understanding of how different branches of knowledge interrelate. These courses enable students to acquire the skills and concepts they will need to work effectively across multiple disciplines. CLS further encourages students to link traditional subjects in new ways, or explore the conceptual and methodological differences between arts and sciences.
Students will also study a foreign language – essential in today’s global society. Other global orientation programs give students the opportunity to immerse themselves in foreign cultures, and to further their sense of global citizenship. Moreover, students will be given the opportunity to explore future employment options through internships.
Beyond the educational context, students will develop a range of invaluable skills and attributes that CLS cultivates: productivity, teamwork, determination, leadership, perseverance, motivation, and confidence.
CLS students must have an insatiable curiosity, a desire to challenge the rules, and push the boundaries. CLSers, by nature, have interests in a wide variety of things, demonstrated not only through the originality and diversity of their academic choices and approaches, but also through their fellowship and sense of community.

Upon graduation, students are expected to have acquired a specialized knowledge of their chosen major, along with invaluable qualifications such as strong leadership, communication skills, wisdom, and willingness to work creatively and flexibly in diverse fields.