Grand Master Park had proven in Korea that he was an excellent fighter and teacher. But now he was in America where the peoples’ wants and customs were very different. He started his first Tae Kwon Do class in 1974. But it closed after only two months. Grand Master Park believes that the advanced techniques he taught were too difficult for beginning students, who quickly became frustrated and stopped coming to class.
Grand Master Park changed his style and concentrated on the basics when he reopened his school in Jackson and soon thereafter expanding to Hillsdale College. As the Tae Park Institute grew, Grand Master Park focused on building a strong supportive organization that would produce black belts with solid leadership skills. As the years passed, Grand Master Park opened schools in Springport, Grand Rapids, Hillsdale, Jackson, and Ypsilanti. In 1976 Tae Park Institute conducted it’s first Black Belt testing. Although many students studied under Grand Master Park only these 19 students were part of that first testing.
There were 18 testing for 1st Dan:
Tandy Amburgy, Mike Ascuitto, Lynn Bernard, Steve Burnett, John Carey, Jeff Duane, Mark Good, Thomas Hallin, Wendy Hauser, Gary Jones, Steve Molden, Bruce Park Sr, Ronnie Parker, Leroy Pegler, Ed Rugh, Madeline Matthews-Rugh, Richard Warren, Mike Wittum
There was one testing for 2nd Dan: