Light of Ithaca
History of "Light of Ithaca"
"Light of Ithaca" is an initiative by Dr. Xiangkun (Elvis) Cao. As a researcher from a first-generation, low-income (FGLI) background, Elvis has the experience of navigating his way from a small village in China to being selected as a Schmidt Science Fellow by Schmidt Futures, in partnership with the Rhodes Trust.
Elvis named his initiative "Light of Ithaca" after the city of Ithaca, NY, where his alma mater, Cornell University, is located in. He also hopes Cornell's motto, "I would found an institution where any person can find instruction in any study," can be the "Light of Ithaca" to inspire FGLI students and other minority groups in chemical sciences and beyond.
If you would like to collaborate on initiatives to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion, please contact Elvis here.
About the founder of "Light of Ithaca"
Dr. Xiangkun (Elvis) Cao is currently a Schmidt Science Fellow (2022 cohort, 1 of 29 globally) and a Postdoctoral Fellow co-advised by T. Alan Hatton (MIT ChemE) on carbon capture, and Edward H. Sargent (Northwestern Chemistry) on carbon utilization. He served as an Impact Fellow (2021 cohort, 1 of 8 globally) at the MIT Climate & Sustainability Consortium.
He obtained his Ph.D. degree in 2021 from Cornell University in Ithaca, NY. His research centered on scalable photoreactor design for converting CO2 to solar commodities. He landed on three 30 under 30 lists including Forbes' 30 under 30 in Energy. For more information about Elvis, click on his personal profile.