Videos

By Roadtrip Nation

Jorge Cham

Highlight

Milestones

My road in life took a while to figure out.
Was born and raised in Panama.
Both of his parents were engineers—he grew up seeing first-hand the joy of solving problems and being “on the cutting edge...devoting your life to something new no one has ever done before.”
Attended Georgia Institute of Technology for his undergraduate studies and went on to receive his Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from Stanford University.
He has worked as an instructor and researcher developing neural prosthetics at Caltech, and has also worked on a project developing robotic “cockroaches” that can explore areas humans can’t.
In response to the common anxieties students face going through grad school, he created his popular newspaper and web comic strip, Piled Higher and Deeper (PHD Comics).
PHD Comics has been adapted into two feature-length films: "The PHD Movie" and "The PHD Movie 2: Still in Grad School"; screened at over 500 locations across all seven continents.
He also co-wrote and illustrated—along with physicist Daniel Whiteson—the book "We Have No Idea: A Guide to the Unknown Universe".
Says he sees similarities between his scientific/academic work and his creative art—both embody the search for truth and an expansion of knowledge.
Keep following my journey

Education

High School
Bachelor
Mechanical Engineering
Georgia Institute of Technology-Main Campus
Graduate
Mechanical Engineering
Stanford University
Doctorate
Robotics Technology/Technician
Stanford University

Career

Cartoonist / Roboticist

I am a cartoonist & roboticist best known for my popular web comic, Piled Higher and Deeper.

Career Roadmap

Roadmap
My work combines:
My work combines:
Art
Engineering
Communicating / Sharing Stories

Day to Day

I come up with ideas for storylines, draft the comic strip, illustrate it, and publish it online. I also do some writing for other projects that I am working on.

Skills & Qualities Beyond School

You always have to search for the truth in what you do. Be constantly expanding your knowledge base and your perspective.

Advice for Getting Started

Here's the first step for everyone

If you'd like to be a writer, I think it helps to live a life that is not often written about.

Recommended Education

My career is not related to what I studied. I'd recommend this path instead:

Hurdles

The Noise I Shed

From Peers:

"I thought you were going to be a professor, why would you quit to be a cartoonist?"

Challenges I Overcame

First-Generation Immigrant
Learning Issues

Interviewed By

Degree of Impact

Degree of Impact

Doctoral Roadtrip