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2024 Power 100: Grace Wang

A woman with short, dark hair is wearing a blue shirt and blue suit Photo | Courtesy of Worcester Polytechnic Institute Grace Wang, president of Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Grace Wang Title President Organization Worcester Polytechnic Institute Employees 1,378 Residence Worcester College Northwestern University Read all the Power 100 profiles here.
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Even before she came to Worcester Polytechnic Institute in April 2023, Grace Wang saw the school as a pioneer in project-based learning. As the 17th president at WPI, she plans to continue that forward-thinking tradition, cultivating pathways between academic research and innovative real-world solutions.

Wang has experience in the private sector as well as academia and understands the importance of a partnership between the two sectors. Since 2012, WPI technologies have resulted in regional spin-out companies employing more than 500 people and raising about $1.7 billion in investment. Wang sees the latest innovations coming out of WPI – particularly around climate technology and life sciences – providing a boost to the region’s tech industry.

Wang, the first person of color to serve as WPI president on a non-interim basis, has taken some time to get to know the community, hoping to strengthen partnerships and welcome new opportunities. In June, WPI and the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester partnered to allow Holy Cross graduates to earn a master of science or master of engineering degree at WPI. To be at the forefront of the latest technology, WPI in December established a master’s degree in artificial intelligence, and in April, WPI announced the nation’s first PhD program in financial technology.

Looking ahead, Wang is excited about the potential of Gateway Park, established in 2010 to house research facilities and commercial enterprises and considers it a responsibility to work with the city, state and other stakeholders to further the project. Among the tenants at Gateway, the Massachusetts Academy of Math and Science is teaching the next generation of students about STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math), the core areas of study at WPI.

Read all the Power 100 profiles here.

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