Elijah Martin is a second-year Ph.D. student in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. He is working on developing environmental degradation models for plastics to optimize the design of new polymers for functional and environmental performance. Prior to coming to MIT, Elijah designed new plant-based materials and sustainable processes to create low-carbon meat alternatives at Beyond Meat. His passion for tackling the problem of plastic pollution was galvanized when he saw how insurmountable the challenge of non-recyclable food packaging was, even at an eco-conscious company.
Elijah received his B.S. in chemical engineering from Tufts University in 2017. While there, he served as a facilitator for COLAGE, a national organization that seeks to empower and advocate for LGBTQ+ families. At MIT, Elijah is involved in both the sustainability and maker communities. He serves as a mentor at the MIT MakerWorkshop, a student-run makerspace where he helps undergraduate and graduate students with the design and fabrication of personal and academic projects. He also works as a co-lead instructor of 1.005 Experiential Sustainability, helping undergraduates learn more about sustainability and apply the tools and frameworks of sustainability to their research, internships, and beyond. Elijah also serves as editor and writer for Chembites.org, which seeks to make contemporary chemistry accessible and digestible to the public for improved recruitment and engagement. Finally, Elijah is passionate about international outreach and travel, and the implementation of design and discovery to advance the human-environment interface.