Alumni Spotlight: Yilun “Blake” Lu

Written By University of the West Author

Blake LuUWest extends hearty congratulations to alum Yilun “Blake” Lu, who was recently admitted into the Ph.D. program in Finance with the College of Business at University of Texas, Arlington (UTA). Blake will start his study at UTA in fall 2022 as the recipient of the Dean’s Doctoral Assistantship and Graduate Doctoral Teaching Fellowships.

Blake also holds a master’s degree in Human Resources Management at George Washington University. Prior to his graduate studies, he completed his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Accounting from UWest from 2017 to 2019. He did so as a 2+2 student, having come from UWest’s sister school, Nanhua University in Taiwan.

Blake shared that UWest was his first introduction to America. In fact, he had never thought he would have the opportunity to travel to the United States, let alone dream of studying abroad. Thanks to the Fo Guang Shan Consortium Schools network, a new door opened for him.

He lived in the dorms at UWest during his first year. He liked the peaceful campus with an abundance of trees and the friendly community. He enjoyed the dining hall and pool. He was involved with campus activities, becoming the treasurer of the Data Analyst Club.

After graduating from UWest, Blake continued to stay in touch with his professors, particularly Chair of the Business Department, Dr. Bill Chen. Blake looks back fondly on his time here, grateful that he received an “impressive education at UWest.” Asked what the best lesson was he learned at UWest, Blake said that his time here taught him to try new things and that communication skills are very important. According to him, opportunities are everywhere in the U.S., but you must communicate what you want. It is the opposite in Taiwan, where oftentimes you must wait for “opportunities to look for you.”

Blake will be doing his doctoral research on the financial market, portfolio management, and asset pricing. “My assumption is that risk and return are not correlated,” he said. “I want to find a way to predict the systematic risk of the stock market.” Blake hopes to finish his Ph.D. in four years. He plans to publish papers along the way and become a tenured professor in the long-term. In addition, Blake would welcome an opportunity to “going back and serving the UWEST community.”

[Update: This article has been updated with the correct titles of the scholarships.]


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