Alumni Focus: Luisa Javier, M.S. 2011 - Environmental Science and Engineering

Luisa Javier graduated from KAUST in 2011 with a master’s degree in environmental science and engineering. After graduating, she co-founded the startup Sin Acqua, a waterless biotech company, in her native country of Mexico. In 2017, she returned to KAUST to begin her Ph.D. studies in environmental science and engineering.

Javier is currently hard at work with both her company and her studies to develop technologies to conserve water. Through her work, she hopes to achieve her biggest life goal, which is to create a nonprofit organization that can provide potable water to people who lack or who have no access to fresh water supplies.

Javier describes herself as having two sides to her personality: one side loves science and the other loves soft skills topics.

“This duality in my personality connects me with my mission in life, which is integrating science, entrepreneurship and personal development in projects that protect the environment,” she said.

Prior to KAUST, Javier studied industrial engineering at the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) in Mexico. She chose to continue her studies at KAUST because the environment pushed her outside of her comfort zone and broadened her horizons.

“My time at KAUST helped me develop in many areas of my life. When I first came here, there were some meetings in which we were told that KAUST looked for people who can transform the world. I have to be honest and say that at that moment, it sounded to me a bit grandiose. However, after leaving KAUST and coming back again, I really believe KAUST prepares and gives you the resources for changing the world,” she said.

“In 2010, I struggled to find out what was the purpose of my research and studies,” Javier continued. “Now I understand why I had to undertake every single course, experiment, paper, etc. Maybe for current students right now a sense of plans and future structure is unclear, but always give 100 percent of yourself. Act on and look at building the necessary abilities in order to get the results you desire. Once you find the purpose for what you are doing—think of the highest possible outcome you can achieve—you will have to work hard to transform yourself into the greatest version of the person you want to be.”

- By David Murphy, KAUST News

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