MSU Assistant Professor of Instructional Systems and Workforce Development Wei-Chieh “Wayne” Yu enjoys sharing knowledge with his students, but for the Taiwan native, learning is always a two-way street.
“Technology advances so quickly, it’s really hard for anybody to be the expert in any field,” Yu said. “It’s my belief that between myself and the student, there must be something the student knows better than I do.”
Although he is now teaching classes on advanced office systems, computer repair and maintenance and introduction to data networks, among others, Yu knows what it’s like to be a student at MSU. In 2008, he received his doctorate in instructional systems, leadership and workforce development from the university.
Yu came to MSU after receiving a bachelor’s degree in finance from Ohio State University and a master’s in Teaching English as a Second Language from the University of Pennsylvania. After receiving his doctorate, Yu returned to Taiwan where he taught English to nursing students.
In 2015, an opportunity opened up for Yu to come back to his alma mater as an assistant professor. Yu started at MSU in January 2016, and he and his family have re-embraced MSU and Starkville. Yu likes to go for runs near the Thad Cochran Research, Technology and Economic Development Park, and his family has made a habit of going to Sunday afternoon movies.
“The college is like a big family,” Yu said. “I’ve always enjoyed this environment. If I wanted to come back to the U.S., Mississippi State was on the top of my list. I’ve been very blessed with this opportunity.”
In addition to teaching, Yu conducts research on the use of technology and media in teaching and learning. For one research project, he used Facebook to teach English writing to students. He also has helped develop new courses at the university. He and his colleagues recently concluded a research project related to integrating technology into education, which has resulted in a textbook due out by the end of the year.
Yu said he enjoys his time spent with students and is proud of the way the university helps them succeed.
“Before they graduate, most of our students already have a job,” Yu said. “The job market is very competitive. We try to connect the academic and real-world experiences. Students are exposed to broad spectrum of courses, which leads to very good job prospects,” he said.
“MSU gives chances to students who want to succeed. Life is full of obstacles. Sometimes we might trip over those, but the university, the faculty and the staff are always here to support you.”
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