Student Spotlight: Ruifang Zhang

Author: Chloee Robison
Meet Ruifang Zhang!
Ruifang Zhang
Ruifang is a 4th year Ph.D. student studying industrial engineering. Her favorite activities include traveling and hiking, and her favorite place to visit is San Diego. Born and raised in China, she received her bachelor’s degree in material chemistry and her master’s in physical chemistry. In 2019, she joined her best friend at her dream school: Purdue!
Ruifang says she enjoys IE most for its interdisciplinarity. Though beginning her Ph.D. studies without a traditional engineering education proved to be a challenge, IE truly has a place for all learners. She has been able to use her own expertise to advance and explore the field of IE. Working with Dr. Wenzhuo Wu, her current research is focused on non-invasive wearable sensors for human health monitoring.
Ruifang credits Dr. Wu for a large part of her success at Purdue: “Dr. Wu has been supportive and has given me the freedom to pursue various projects without objection. He has also provided insightful discussions about the research.” Working with Dr. Wu has encouraged Ruifang to continue pursuing research, and she hopes that following her graduation next December, she will be able to do just that!
Ruifang’s piece of advice for younger students: explore. You never really know what path you want to choose when you first start your education, and exploring more can help you feel more certain about what you want to do. Coming from a unique background into IE has helped her gain a new perspective on her education, and Ruifang is as excited for her future as we are!