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Inaugural UCSD J. Yang Scholars Symposium

Participants at the inaugural UCSD J. Yang Scholars Symposium held on September 25, 2021. Photo credit by UCSD recording

The first annual symposium for J Yang Scholars at the University of California San Diego (UCSD) was held on September 25, 2021, with support from the J. Yang and Family Foundation, and administrators and faculty at the university. It was chaired by Dr. Paul Yu, a distinguished professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department.
The UC San Diego J Yang Scholars Symposium opened with remarks by Dr. Elizabeth H. Simmons, Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at UC San Diego, Jackson Yang, president of the J. Yang & Family Foundation, Professor Andrew McCulloch, Director of the Institute of Engineering in Medicine (IEM), and Professor Shu Chien, founding Director of UC San Diego’s Institute of Engineering in Medicine and the Director of the J. Yang Scholarship Program at UCSD. 

Mr. Jackson Yang was delighted to attend the symposium and meet the young scholars from Taiwan giving presentations. He addressed the participants, saying “I grew up in poor family and did not have the opportunity to receive advanced education. Therefore, I have a strong desire to help young people to pursue the best possible education and training. This was the motivation for me to establish the J. Yang Scholarship Program. I am grateful for the excellent collaboration provided by the UCSD in establishing this program. It provides wonderful opportunities for students from Taiwan to receive the best education and pursue state of the art research for the advancement of human lives, society and nation in this top university of the world.”

The heart of the symposium was the presentations given by the J. Yang Scholars. They outlined their research plans and their initial findings. Professor Ping-Hui Liao and Professor Paul Yu served as the moderators.

In the closing session, Louis M. Huang, Director General of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Los Angeles, congratulated the inaugural group of J. Yang Scholars at UCSD whose presentations had showcased the high quality of the J. Yang Scholars program awardees. He also welcomed the second group of students who had been selected to be recipients of this prestigious award. Director General Huang commented that “Taiwan has always worked very closely with the United States in the field of education. Based on shared values of openness, diversity, freedom, and democracy, we hope to encourage international academic cooperation for our mutual benefit. The J. Yang Scholarship program is another prominent example of our robust partnership. We are especially appreciative of Mr. & Mrs. Jackson Yang’s generosity in supporting UC San Diego. The impact and assistance that the J. Yang Scholarship funds provide will ripple across campus.” He also thanked Professor Chien, the Program Steering Committee, and all the faculty advisors for making this symposium possible, and thereby providing an excellent platform for the Taiwanese young scholars to exchange creative and advanced ideas.

Taiwanese students who are considering undertaking advanced studies in the U.S. can see the full symposium program and a video recording here. The university is planning to host an in-person symposium at campus in late summer or early fall in 2022, to engage and document bilateral exchange and dialogue. It will have joint U.S.–Taiwan participation, planning and organization, and include plenary and keynote lectures, discussion groups, and more presentations by the J. Yang Scholars at UCSD on their ongoing research.