Don Clark is newly retired after 38 years teaching at Trinity University in San Antonio. His roots in Asian Studies go back to childhood, growing up in Tokyo and Seoul as the son and grandson of Presbyterian missionaries. At Seoul Foreign High School he developed interests in his surroundings—Korea’s colonial past and its struggles to recover from the 1950-53 war. East Asia continued to be an interest during college in Washington State.
In 1967-70 Don and his wife Linda served in the Peace Corps, again in South Korea. They then moved to Cambridge where Don earned his A.M. and Ph.D. in History and East Asian Languages at Harvard University. In 1978 he joined the Trinity faculty to teach courses on China, Japan, Korea, and U.S. Foreign Relations. He spent sabbaticals in Korea researching and writing, watching Korea change over the decades and producing an array of books and articles.
At Trinity, Don was a builder of Study Abroad programs, founding the International Programs Office and later co-founding Trinity’s East Asian Studies program. He taught twice on Semester at Sea (S02 and A04) and often on programs in Korea and China. He was the lead faculty member on Trinity’s summer program at Shanghai Jiaotong University in 2015.
Don’s books and articles mainly concern Korean issues. He still lectures on Korea, including North Korea, based on his experiences serving in the DPRK with Christian Friends of Korea (www.ckf.org) in connection with CFK’s humanitarian work in the field of tuberculosis control. His current research is on the American role in the Korean revolutions of 1960 and 1961.