Young Professionals

Young Professionals in Polyurethane

Did you know polyurethane supports more than 270,000 jobs in the United States? That number is only expected to grow in the coming years as PU products continue to touch every aspect of our daily lives-- from the cards we drive to the mattresses we sleep on.

Polyurethane contributes to more than $86 billion in output to the U.S. economy every year. From research and development to sales and marketing, there's a job that's right for everyone in polyurethane. The Young Professionals series highlights a few of the young workers making a living in polyurethane today. Get to know their stories as you learn how and why they've chosen to make polyurethane a part of their careers.


A Young Chemist’s Work Helps to Conserve Energy Resources, Empowering Consumers to Do More with Less

Senior chemist Raul Dacomba was lucky. Professional inspiration struck him at a young age, but to hear him tell it, it came about in an unusual way.

Category: Young Professionals

A Young Polyurethane Professional Works to Create Wood Composites of the Future

While completing his degree in chemistry at a master’s program, Gustavo Leon first learned about polyurethane production and polyurethane’s presence in everyday products. Raised and educated in Venezuela, Gustavo’s love of chemistry eventually led him to seek a career in the United States.

Category: Young Professionals

A Chemist Weighs in on Doing Meaningful Work, Staying Passionate

At 34 years-old, Rima Ghoreishi isn’t your typical chemist. For starters, she is younger than most of her colleagues and also happens to part of the growing number of women working in the field of polyurethane.

Category: Young Professionals

A Chemistry Major Finds His Niche in Advocacy

As an undergraduate chemistry major at the University of Maryland, Stephen Wieroniey had dreams of working in the chemical industry. Upon graduation, he found himself entering the job market right at the peak of the Great Recession and had no concrete plan for what a career in the chemistry might look like.

Category: Young Professionals

A Student Athlete Finds A Career in Polyurethane

After graduating from the University of Texas with a chemical engineering degree, Austin Boudreaux hoped to put his newfound skills to work in the polyurethane industry. With a background in athletics and having played for various teams growing up, he was peripherally aware of polyurethane’s (PU) use in sporting goods and athletic wear.

Category: Young Professionals

A Young Scientist Works to Improve Infrastructure

Growing up on her family’s farm in Auburn, Michigan, Staci Wegener spent the summers of her childhood tending fields of beans and sugar beets.

Category: Young Professionals

An International Postdoc Research Fellow Finds a Home in Polyurethane Additives

Petr Koutnik had a plan; he was going to spend his entire career in academia. When the young graduate student embarked upon his post-doctoral research, he intended to complete his studies, then look for a tenure track position at one of the many big-name chemistry departments at universities in the United States. Then, as plans do, his changed.

Category: Young Professionals

A Physics Major Finds Her Niche in Polyurethane

Kaitlyn Tautkus-Berry’s career path leading her to the polyurethane industry is an interesting one. It began with a love of  high school physics that she turned into a college degree.

Category: Young Professionals