Heather O. LeClerc, PhD

About Me

I am a current Gaylord Donnelley postdoctoral fellow at Yale University working in the Department of Chemical & Environmental Engineering under the supervision of Dr. Drew Gentner. My research focuses on:

I completed my PhD in Chemical Engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) in March, 2023 working jointly under Dr. Andrew Teixeira and Dr. Mike Timko as part of the WPI Clean Energy Group. At WPI, my research focused on understanding the fundamental chemistry governing waste conversion to bio-oil through hydrothermal liquefaction, for which I received a Fulbright award to complete my research at Aalborg University under the guidance of Dr. Thomas Helmer Pedersen and Dr. Daniele Castello.

I grew up in nearby Connecticut and moved to western Pennsylvania to obtain my BS in Environmental Chemistry with minors in Biotechnology and Mathematics from St. Vincent College. After completing an award-winning senior thesis on the production of dye-sensitized solar cells, I realized that engineering was the path for me! 

Beyond research, I am actively involved in the promotion of women in STEM and mental health awareness. At WPI, I co-founded GROW- the Graduate Research Organization for Womxn in STEM, which received a 2020 WPI Women's Impact Network grant to fund workshops and speaker series.