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About Our Students

Students who choose Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering come to Penn eager to tackle real-world problems. They relish the challenges posed by math, chemistry, physics, and the biological sciences.

A major in chemical and biomolecular engineering opens a wide range of opportunities. The Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering program teaches them to think across length scales that span from the molecular to the macroscopic. It enables them to move from studying chemical reactions at the nanoscale to designing industrial plants. Our graduates may move on to discover a unique molecular reaction in a cell, or they may develop a method to deliver a drug to that cell. Both our undergraduate and graduate students are uniquely positioned to influence the worlds of business, medicine, industry, and the environment and to advance to the highest levels of research and academia.

Undergraduate Spotlight

Emily Peters Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering Class of 2018

Emily Peters Likes a Challenge


Emily Peters, a senior in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering (CBE), lived her entire life in a small town in New Jersey with a population of less than 200. Needless to say, she was quite excited to attend the University of Pennsylvania, which is in the middle of one of the most populous cities in the United States. The challenge of the studying in a big city is but one of the many that Emily has taken on.

Chemistry and engineering was not an unfamiliar challenge to Emily as her exposure to the field came at an early age. Her mother, who was advised by none other than CBE’s Dr. Warren Seider, is a chemical engineer, and her younger brother, Matthew, is a junior in the CBE department.  Emily chose to follow in the family tradition, choosing both Penn, as her school of choice, and a career in Chemical Engineering.  Fortunately, Emily’s high school had excellent science and math programs and she was encouraged to pursue advanced courses. Consequently, she often found herself in a math or science class populated by her and 16 to 17 male students. Emily was undaunted, seeing that this was yet another challenge to face and conquer.

Emily also likes to challenge herself with non-academic endeavors.  As far back as she can remember, she was involved in theatre, choir and dancing, and recounts one special memory when she sang with Kenny Rogers in a community theatre performance, at the age of 16.  In addition to theatre, she spent four years on the high school fencing team and competed in the state championship tournament each year.  Accordingly, while quite impressive, it is not surprising that Emily is currently the Music Director of the Quaker Notes, Penn’s all-female a cappella group; President of Osiris Performing Arts Senior Society; Committee Head of Advancing Women in Engineering Advisory Board; and a member of Sigma Kappa Sorority.

As for plans after graduation, she is interested in entrepreneurship and chemical engineering, and has decided to pursue business development within the chemical sciences industry.  She is currently working on projects for new product development for a specialty chemicals company, and finds the prospect of seeking opportunities that will allow her to use her engineering degree, and apply it to business, a wonderful challenge. 

Emily also plans to continue her work in Advancing Women in Engineering.

Learn more about the BSE in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering.