Jacob Fields

"What I enjoy the most about my research is that I’m basically living out my lifelong dream.”

Hometown: Fishers, Ind.

Year: Third-year PhD student

Program: Chemical Engineering

Mission Areas: Advanced Manufacturing and MaterialsBiotechnologyEnvironment and Energy

Lab: Syed Mubeen Research Group

Advisor:  Syed Mubeen, assistant professor of chemical and biomedical engineering

What brought you to the Iowa Technology Institute?

Addressing climate change has always been my primary motivation and goal and Dr. Mubeen’s research group develops exciting technologies which do exactly that. His work in solar energy and carbon dioxide conversion are what drew me to the Iowa Technology Institute.

What do you work on and what do you enjoy most about your work? 
My focus is carbon dioxide conversion by electrochemical methods; using electricity to drive a chemical reaction that turns carbon dioxide into valuable chemical products like formic acid or methanol. The aim is to decrease the amount of carbon dioxide  emitted from factories and power plants.

What I enjoy the most about my research is that I’m basically living out my lifelong dream. I’ve always been interested in confronting climate change and I’ve had a passion for chemistry ever since high school. So, to be a part of this work represents the culmination of years of work and personal interest.

 What are your goals for the future? What do you hope to be doing professionally in 10 years?

I plan to continue a career in research in some capacity, whether in an industrial setting or an academic one. It would be very exciting to lead my own research group. No matter what I am doing professionally, my ultimate goal is that one day the work I do will have a direct impact on the way that humans find harmony with nature.