Chemical Engineering

In small, focused research groups, students and faculty within WPI’s Chemical Engineering Department go beyond the classroom to solve real-world problems, continuing to make discoveries in areas like environmental protection, renewable energy, and life sciences, through research and development of new technologies, processes, and materials.

We work hard to shape young scientific minds in a familial, friendly, tight-knit atmosphere. You’ll be made to feel welcome from the very first day, forming strong bonds with your professors and fellow students that will benefit you professionally and personally.

Chemical Engineering Faculty Search

The WPI Chemical Engineering Department is searching for the endowed Manning Chair position at the full professor level.

WPI TouchTomorrow a success - with the help of Chemical Engineering graduate students!

The Chemical Engineering Graduate Organization (CEGO) participated in TouchTomorrow on June 10th, 2017. Their demonstration, titled "The Energy Boom ", drew in large crowds every 30 minutes as the graduate students taught about alternative energy sources, fuel cells and catalysis. Each demo ended with a bang, where a platinum catalyst was used to pop a small bubble of oxygen and hydrogen to demonstrate just how much energy could be harvested from fuel cells. Then, this energy was then re-directed into a fuel cell to power a small whirligig. STEM outreach is one of the core CEGO missions.

WPI Recognizes Outstanding Teaching of Professor Kmiotek

For his years of excellent teaching at WPI, Chemical Engineering Professor of Practice Stephen J. Kmiotek received the 2017 Board of Trustees' Award for Outstanding Teaching. Congratulations Professor Kmiotek!

WPI Chemical Engineers are making beautiful music in the name of science

STEM program connects young students to complex, hard to visualize concepts through sound.

As part of the STEM for All video showcase, a team of three WPI professors discuss the development of a data sonification tool for young students.

Michael Timko, Asst. Professor of Chemical Engineering, Erin Ottmar, Asst. Professor of Psychology and Learning Sciences, and V. J. Manzo Asst. Professor of Music Technology and Cognition collaborated to make data-driven music.

Meet Our Students

Jason B.
Jason B.
Junior, BS in Chemical Engineering

The goal of Jason and his team’s IQP at the Albania Project Center was to help their sponsor assess how pharmaceutical waste—particularly expired drug disposal—is managed in areas of Tirana. The current state of pharmaceutical waste management in Albania is fragile and constitutes one of the biggest waste management concerns in the country. Jason and his three teammates interviewed 73 pharmacists—10 percent of the total pharmacists in Tirana—about their pharmaceutical waste disposal practices. The information they gathered will provide the sponsor with data to obtain grant money from the U.S. Embassy to conduct a more in-depth investigation on every pharmacist in Tirana.

Aaron McGinnis
Aaron M.
Senior, BS in Chemical Engineering

A chemical engineering undergraduate travels the world and learns what it means to work in industry.

Kayla Sica
Kayla S.
Sophomore, BS in Chemical Engineering & Minor in Biochemistry

Kayla is on a mission to develop treatments for neurological disorders, and she’s found her ideal undergrad think tank in a global biotech hotspot.

Marissa Leone
Marissa L.
Sophomore, BS in Chemical Engineering

A chemical engineering student shows that you really can find a balance between schoolwork and extracurricular activities.

Scientists search for cheaper and cleaner alternatives

With a $500,000 CAREER Award from the National Science Foundation, Michael Timko is exploring the use of solid acids in biomass conversion, which he believes will simplify the breakdown process, significantly reduce the cost of biofuels (making them not only competitive with, but possibly less expensive than fossil fuels), and, ultimately, create a cleaner and more sustainable source of energy for the world.

Turning Plant Waste into Fuel with Solid Acids

Careers in Chemical Engineering

Chemical engineering is a broad-based discipline, with roots in chemistry, math, physics, and biology. While about 80 percent of potential jobs are found in the chemical industry, chemical engineering’s interdisciplinary nature means potential careers run the gamut. Indeed, chemical engineering has been called the liberal arts of engineering.

Facts & Figures

Top 10

Best colleges for women in stem fields

Best Colleges Online (2016)

Engineering Program in the nation

College Factual (2015)

Chemical Engineering major in the nation

College Factual (2016)

For 193 research awards 

I would not have made it anywhere this far if it weren’t for the support this community has given me and the tremendous positive impact it has made on my life.
Victor Hu
BS, Chemical Engineering
2016 Salisbury Prize Recipient

Honoring Professor Yi Hua (Ed) Ma

 Former students collaborate to create a scholarship honoring a beloved faculty member.