Richard Chang helps Yanshu Li Jumpstart Career with First Job


The excitement is apparent from the start of UB graduate student Yanshu Li’s letter to his mentor and benefactor. “I'm very happy to tell you that because of your recommendation letter, Alta Devices has made a job offer to me.”

“Without you, I could not have made it this far.”

The recipient of this happy news is Richard Chang (MS ’79), CEO of Zing Semiconductor Corp., the first 300mm silicon wafer maker in China. Chang also is chairman, CEO and founder of ShineRayTek Optoelectronics and AepiTek Optoelectronics, two integrated supply chains for LED products, and founder of Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp. (SMIC), China’s largest foundry.

Yanshu Li met Chang when the distinguished UB alumnus came to Buffalo in March to attend the Order of the Engineer ceremony and speak with students in the Department of Electrical Engineering. Li is a PhD candidate in that department’s Materials, Device and Circuit Simulations Laboratory.

Li will be a process development engineer at Alta Devices, a top producer of GaAs solar cells. In his letter to Chang, he describes the new job as “a good starting position for me.

“Many thanks for your support! Without you, I could not have made it this far.”

When Chang received UB’s Distinguished International Alumni Award in 2013, he credited UB’s engineering school for helping him “develop lifelong friendships,” and reminisced about arriving in Buffalo, as a 23-year-old, in December 1971.

“At the time I worried about which class to go to, where to find my professors, where to sleep, where to eat. I never thought about the future. But in Buffalo, I learned a lot from my professors and classmates. The engineering school taught us teamwork.”

Decades later, Chang replied with encouragement to Yanshu Li, another young student at UB.  

“Dear Yanshu, It is wonderful to hear the good news that you have received the offer to work for the best GaAs solar cell company. Our semiconductor company will always have an opening for you.

Keep in touch. Blessings, Richard”