Ted Zwang | Chemistry

From: Flemington, NJ

Pomona Days: Class of 2011, Chemistry

Current Employment: Postdoctoral Fellow in Bioelectronics @ Harvard, studying how to integrate nanowire electronics within brain tissue to monitor and repair brain damage.

Previous Employment & Education:

  • PhD in Chemistry @ California Institute of Technology
  • National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow


When I started at Pomona I was aimless. Fortunately, it was a low-risk
environment that allowed me to explore and discover myself. I feel like I
owe my happiness with my career to the accessibility of opportunities and
a little bit of luck.

At the end of my sophomore year I decided I wanted to stay on campus over
the summer. This wasn’t a very well thought out plan. I had no idea what I
wanted to. One of my TA’s in organic chemistry lab told me he thought I
should do research. He did a terrible job selling me on the idea. It
sounded boring. Eventually he strong-armed me into meeting with a
professor and I must say I’m very glad that he did. That summer I found
out I love conducting chemistry research.

I still think it’s funny that things ended up that way, especially because
I didn’t particularly enjoy chemistry classes. It made me realize
something important that I wish I had known earlier: Learning about
something can be a vastly different experience compared to actually doing
that thing. If your goal is to find a career you will be happy with then
don’t just take classes. Do things.

Feel free to contact me for any reason, but I'll probably be best suited
to help with any questions about chemistry or graduate school in science.