Charles and Lynn Zhang Scholarship and Endowment

Charles and Lynn Zhang

The Academically Talented Youth Program (ATYP) in Western Michigan University's Office of Pre-College Programming is pleased to announce the establishment of the Charles and Lynn Zhang Scholarship. This scholarship will be available to any ATYP student who qualifies for free or reduced lunch and will cover the cost of all registration fees, books, and calculators required for the program.

Funding for this scholarship is provided by Charles Zhang and Lynn Chen-Zhang. The Zhangs both earned graduate degrees from Western Michigan University and run a Michigan-based fee-only financial planning and investment firm, Zhang Financial. In addition, the Zhang's two sons, Mitchell and Alex, are ATYP alumni. The Zhangs are supporters of many programs on campus, including the Zhang Career Center in the Haworth College of Business and the Zhang Legacy Collections Center. Lynn Chen-Zhang serves as vice chair of the WMU Board of Trustees, and is also president of the WMU Foundation Board of Directors. Charles Zhang has served as an adjunct professor of finance at WMU. 

 ATYP extends its heartfelt gratitude to the Zhangs, not only for the creation of this scholarship, but for their steadfast support over the past several years.  Nearly four decades after its founding, the continued generosity of alumni and their families allows ATYP to continue to grow, thrive, and serve students in Southwest Michigan.

In addition, we are proud to announce the creation of the Charles C. and Lynn L. Chen-Zhang Academically Talented Youth Program Personnel Endowment. It’s the most recent contribution from alumni and philanthropists Charles Zhang and Lynn Chen-Zhang, chair of the WMU Board of Trustees and WMU Foundation Board of Directors member. 

The endowment supports an ATYP coordinator position; the inaugural recipient will be Ms. Becky Cooper, who first taught for ATYP in 1997 as a graduate student. From 2007-10, she was an assistant coordinator and became chair of the ATYP English program in 2010.

"I love being on this journey with them. I love seeing every 'ah-ha' moment, every smile of delight, every spark of scholarly fire in their faces. I appreciate how much they care about our explorations together and how much they care about each other and the world around them," says Cooper. "I think the students enjoy the sense of accomplishment that comes from mastering the skills they obtain through a program that challenges them."