As big changes were happening in China in 1949, Richard Yen ’53 and his family moved across the world with one suitcase each. His father had accepted a new job in New York City at the United Nations Library. During the prior year, Richard had applied to three American universities and was accepted with a full scholarship to Brown.
While Richard’s scholarship covered his full tuition, he worked several jobs to cover his other expenses. Working in the dining hall—which served formal, sit-down dinners—helped pay for his meals. He also worked for several professors as a grading assistant and held an internship with an outside company. As an engineering student, he was involved with the Brown Engineering Society, the American Institute of Electrical Engineers, and the Brown Chapter of the Institute of Radio Engineers.
Richard went on to earn his master’s degree from Harvard and have a long and successful career as an engineer. He retired as vice president of Digital Equipment Company, where he oversaw the company’s international business—spending more than 20 years in Taiwan. He and his wife now reside in California.
Grateful for his scholarship support, Richard established a charitable gift annuity in 2020 that will support international financial aid. As Brown raises funds to enable need-blind admissions for international students, gifts like these are a great way to attract students, like Richard, whose global perspectives enhance the academic experience across College Hill.