Young Tufts alumni make an impact

School of Engineering alumni named to Forbes’ prestigious 30 Under 30 lists.
Natalie Rubio, EG22, and Alex Rappaport, E17, EG19

Each year, Forbes magazine publishes a series of 30 Under 30 lists, highlighting notable people under the age of 30 across a range of industries. Two Tufts University School of Engineering alumni were recently recognized in the 2023 lists: Alex Rappaport, E17, EG19, and Natalie Rubio, EG22. Last year electrical engineering alum Jesse Zhang, E14, was named to the 2022 Social Media list.

Alex Rappaport, E17, EG19, is the co-founder and CEO of ZwitterCo, a wastewater recycling company based in Woburn, MA and originally founded by Rappaport and classmates while students at Tufts. Rappaport was named to the 2023 Manufacturing and Industry list for the company’s innovative filtration membranes that resist oil and grease more effectively than standard filtration systems. He is a double Jumbo, earning his undergraduate degree in environmental engineering and his master’s in innovation and management.

ZwitterCo developed with support from the Derby Entrepreneurship Center and boasts several Tufts alumni on the team. The company uses filtration technology developed by Associate Professor Ayse Asatekin of the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering. “All of our network and learning on how to do this came from Tufts. We are a true Tufts company,” Rappaport said in a 2019 interview with Tufts Now.

Natalie Rubio, EG22, was named to the 2023 Science list for her efforts in advancing cellular agriculture. After earning a PhD in biomedical engineering at Tufts in 2022, Rubio joined Ark Biotech as a cellular agriculture scientist. During her time at Tufts, Rubio gained hands-on experience growing cells for cultivated meat in Stern Family Professor David Kaplan’s tissue engineering research group. Learn more about Rubio’s research at Tufts in The Conversation and Tufts Now, and from New Harvest.

The work that Rappaport and Rubio were each recognized for – advancing wastewater recycling and cellular agriculture – both have implications for a more sustainable future. The School of Engineering continues to foster research that has a positive impact on the world and remains committed to supporting students and alumni as they build their careers.