Stephen Yang

Stephen Yang is a planned 2023 graduate of Plano West Senior High School in Plano, Texas.
Diagnosed with ADHD in 6th grade and severe keratoconus in 9th grade, he ended up
struggling during his 10th-grade year due to a combination of insufficient accommodations and
near-blindness. Since then, he has excelled academically as an AP Scholar with Distinction and
National Merit Semifinalist with a 4.5 cumulative GPA.

Outside of school, Stephen is passionate about agricultural research and was selected to
represent Texas at the World Food Prize Global Youth no Institute — the highest award for high school students in agriculture — among other accolades such as 2nd place at the Texas Junior Academy of Sciences. His other research interests include high-temperature electronics and specialty materials, of which he was named an IEEE CASS Student Design Competition finalist and an ACM IVSP 2022 conference speaker.

Stephen’s prior struggles with controlling his disability compelled him to pursue a disability
advocacy, being a regular participant in forums such as Next Generation Youth, and found the
STEMIEP division of the national nonprofit organization AYSI in order to inspire students with
learning disabilities to pursue scientific research. As a member of the YALC, Stephen plans to
bring his unique approach toward advocacy and education based on his personal experiences
to the 1 in 5 who learn differently, with the goal of eliminating the achievement gap both inside
and out of the schoolhouse door.

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