Interview - Lam Yu

Born in 1977 in Taishan, Guangdong, China, Dr. Lam Yu currently serves as an Associate Teaching Professor of Physics and Astronomy at Rice University. In Hong Kong, where he grew up, Yu attended Heoi Ta Tung Primary School and learned the importance of a good education from a young age. He moved to the US shortly before completing elementary school. Having attended two different elementary schools on opposite sides of Houston, he recalls how each neighborhood’s affluence impacted its quality of public education. Later, Yu attended Trinity University for his undergraduate education. There, he not only realized that he wanted to pursue physics as a future career path, but also made some of his closest friends who he still keeps in touch with today. After completing college, Yu attended graduate school at Rice University, and then occupied a post-doctoral research position at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in Maryland. Yu’s original plan was to become tenure faculty, so following his post-doc, he accepted a tenure track position at the University of Memphis. However, when he and his wife were expecting their firstborn child, Yu realized that Memphis was not his ideal environment to raise a family in, because it was so segregated. As a result, Yu left Memphis and accepted a teaching position at Rice University. Throughout his nine years of teaching physics and astronomy at Rice, he has continuously honed his teaching skills, aiming to cultivate an inclusive classroom environment that supports Rice’s diverse student body. Along with his wife and three children, Yu looks forward to forming more personal connections with students as the newly appointed Head Residential Associate at Hanszen College. Outside of his career, he enjoys spending time with his kids, reading, listening to podcasts and audiobooks, traveling, and experimenting with various projects.

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