Melanie Rodríguez Pabón | Student Spotlight
Melanie Rodríguez Pabón
"As a Puerto Rican who lived on the island my entire life until moving to Stanford, I have directly faced the consequences of climate change through catastrophic atmospheric events such as Hurricane María and Irma. I have also lived through the consequences of a precarious electric grid and water potable systems on the island, which has left thousands, and at times millions, of us without access to these basic necessities for months. Witnessing so many issues like these, environmental and structural, has developed a yearning within me to find engineering solutions. As a Chemical Engineer, I aspire to address some of the most pressing problems in the world relating to energy and sustainability.
I have truly enjoyed getting different hands-on research experiences within the Chemical Engineering department here at Stanford. Currently, I am an undergraduate researcher in the Jaramillo lab studying the electrochemical CO2 reduction reaction. Our efforts focus on understanding how to scale up the process of converting it to valuable materials and reduce its presence in our atmosphere to mitigate climate change. I am very grateful for all the support I have received from my mentors, professors, friends, and family. I have learned so much from them and they have reassured me of how passionate I am about research. After graduating from Stanford, I hope to pursue a Ph.D. to apply my knowledge to tackle some of the unanswered questions in the energy and catalysis field while also continuing to advocate and work for a better future for Puerto Rico."