Laboratory work at Ripon leads to career position for Zachary Wieland ’13

The laboratory work Zachary Wieland ’13 did at Ripon College influenced his career path. Wieland, of Appleton, Wisconsin, says, “The projects that the professors in Farr Hall allowed us to work on always gave us some freedom to explore a topic that interested us. Having that freedom to explore our curiosity helped provide real-life experience that I never would have imagined needing to use.”

Wieland now is a laboratory analyst for Synergy Environmental Lab in Appleton, where he helps test air, soil and water samples for contaminants such as petroleum volatile organic compounds (PVOCs) and volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and very soon per- and polyfluorinated substances (PFAS).

The testing helps clients become aware of the environment they are testing in and making improvements. “Companies like the one I work for would have played an important role in testing the environment in cases like the train derailment in East Palestine, Ohio,” Wieland says.

At Ripon, Wieland majored in biology with a minor in chemistry, and he served as an assistant in the Department of Biology.

Mia Bekish ’25
Sherwood, Wisconsin

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