William Woods University recently held its first international alumni event—a luncheon in Taiwan.
William Woods has provided educational opportunities for Taiwanese students since the early 90s. As many as 85 students come to the main campus in Fulton each year to pursue degrees.
However, this was the first time the university had scheduled an alumni affair in their homeland.
The luncheon was hosted by Yuan-Hua (Roger) Wen, assistant professor of education and business and director of instructional technology at William Woods.
Wen was born in Taiwan and came to the United States in 1992 for college. After earning a Ph.D. from the University of Missouri, he joined the WWU faculty in 2003.
His family usually visits annually and he had not been home to Taiwan in nine years. This year, concerned about the health of his father and grandmother, he decided to make the trip with his wife, Lois, and children, Jesse, 10, and Anna, 8.
Since he was going to be there, he decided to host a get-together for WWU alumni.
“A lot of my former students wanted to meet with me, so this seemed like a good idea,” Wen said.
Becky Stinson, alumni director, and two former students living in Taiwan, Lori Hsu and Doris Hsueh, planned an event and e-mailed an invitation. About 30 WWU alumni attended the luncheon, held in a hotel in Taipei May 24.
“All of us were so excited to have this opportunity to bring our Taiwanese alumni together for our first ever international alumni gathering,” Stinson said.
Wen added, “It was a huge success. They were calling other classmates who were not in attendance, telling them about it. They really appreciated our efforts and said they could pull more people if we have an event in the future. Hopefully it won’t be another nine years before I return and we can have another event.”
CUTLINE: Taiwanese alumni of William Woods University gather for the university’s first international alumni event.