By Alexia Fiontello
Dr. Rongjuan Cong credits her successes to her hard work and the mentoring and coaching that she has received throughout her career. As a ﬁrst generation immigrant, she earned her bachelor’s degree in chemistry in China. She later moved to Japan and studied to become a Japanese translator in Canada. Her love of mathematics and models led her to completing her PhD in Chemical Engineering from McMaster University in Ontario. She started her career at Dow Chemical in Analytical Sciences and has worked on solving business problems for the plastics, polyethylene, and materials science product development groups.
When asked about the keys to her success, Cong emphasized that teamwork, having good mentors and coaches, and a passion for her work has helped throughout her career. Her love of what she does was clearly demonstrated during the WCC Rising Star Symposium.
Some advice Cong oﬀers to women starting their careers is to be open‐minded, ﬁnd mentors and be willing to be coached. She has experienced ﬁrsthand the positive impact of good mentoring and coaching that helped her expand her knowledge and develop a new expertise in polyethylene technology area.
Outside of work Cong enjoys gardening and harvesting from the 12 diﬀerent fruit trees she has in her yard. Her favorite fruit is the pineapple.
For Cong, the scientiﬁc challenges she faces are the most exciting part of her job. The thrill of solving problems and watching her teams work diligently and work well together is what brings her career satisfaction.