The Wytheville Community College Educational Foundation recently announced the establishment of the “YP and Trudy Hwu Scholarship Endowment.” Peter Wang, a George Wythe High School graduate, created this scholarship in honor of his uncle and aunt.
Dr. YP Hwu received his PhD degree in physics from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in 1964. Mrs. Trudy Hwu received her BS degree in Physics from Taiwan Normal University. Both YP and Trudy cared deeply about student learning and were dedicated educators throughout their teaching careers and were well respected throughout the community.
YP was Professor of Physics at Wytheville Community College from 1964 until his retirement in 1994. He was well-known for his desire to share knowledge with both students and the community. He loved to make learning fun. He often offered open labs to share with both students and the community. WCC retirees Dr. Phyllis Ashworth and Dr. John DiYorio both colleagues recalled times when YP would set up his telescope on campus and invite students and the public to view astronomical events. As part of YP’s commitment to expanding educational opportunities, he was also known for developing physics experiments that could be set up in third-world countries. In 1991, YP was the first professor from Wytheville Community College to receive the prestigious “Outstanding Faculty Award” from the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia. YP was named WCC Professor Emeritus in 1995.
Trudy Hwu taught physics and mathematics at Fort Chiswell High School from 1965 to 1992, except for 1973-1974, when she taught at George Wythe High School. Trudy was a devoted and easily approachable teacher, beloved by her students.
Both of YP and Trudy’s children, Rosanna and Davis, grew up in Wytheville and graduated from George Wythe High School. Rosanna received her MD degree from University of Virginia and practiced anesthesiology, until her retirement in 2018 to attend to her mother fulltime. Davis received his BS in Mechanical Engineering from University of Maryland and has been a patent examiner at the US Patent and Trademark Office.
“We greatly appreciate Mr. Wang’s generosity in honoring his aunt and uncle,” said Dr. Rhonda Catron-Wood, WCC’s Vice President of Academics and Institutional Advancement. “I had the privilege of working with YP when I first came to WCC, and many alumni still recall the positive impact that Dr. Hwu had on them. I have also heard similar stories of the tremendous difference that Trudy made in the lives of high school students.”
The “YP and Trudy Hwu Scholarship Endowment” will provide financial assistance to deserving recent graduates of Wythe County Public Schools or Wytheville Community College. “Recent graduates” are defined as students who have not been out of high school for more than two years who will be pursuing a bachelor’s degree in a Science, Technology, Engineering, or Mathematics (STEM) program at an accredited four-year college or university. The recipient must also have maintained a minimum 3.0 grade point average in the prior school year.
Anyone wishing to contribute to this scholarship in honor of YP and Trudy Hwu, or for more information about this or other scholarships available at WCC, may contact Catron-Wood at 276-223-4771.