Meet Alum Dr. Robert Molt Jr. ’07, Senior Scientist at ENSCO; U.S. Air Force

Name:  Dr. Robert Molt Jr.

Class Year: 2007

Title: Senior Scientist

Organization Name: ENSCO; U.S. Air Force


1. In one sentence, what does your job entail?

I do research in chemistry and physics for Department of Defense and U.S. National Laboratories, especially in the fields of the quantum many-electron problem, nuclear engineering, IR spectroscopy, and chemical thermodynamics.


2. What planned and unplanned events connected you to your industry and your first employer after Holy Cross? How did you learn/decide it was a good fit for you?  

My first employment, following being a graduate student, was as a professor at IUPUI University in Indianapolis, which was a logical extension of my love of teaching and scientific research. In my current position, I research with the U.S. National Laboratories and Department of Defense. The plan has always been to spend my life learning as much as I can about science; my current employment also allows me to contribute positively to my community at large. I have managed this amidst the unplanned adversities of losing the ability to walk from a spinal injury (I’ve recovered) and 2 blood clots due to genetic illness. However, adversity is that from which we advance, and not the story itself. Any job which allows me do scientific research on important problems and adore my wife is a good job.


3. What were you involved in when you were on campus?

Ballroom dancing, ROTC tutor in calculus/physics


 4. What was your major and how did it affect your career decisions?

I studied chemistry and physics, as I always knew I wanted to be a career scientist.


5. What are one or two skills that you developed at Holy Cross that you use in your work?

The greatest skill I learned at Holy Cross was what NOT to do, i.e., making the stupid mistakes of a young man, growing from them, and learning to be more professional.


6. What advice do you have for students on campus today?

The greatest advice I would offer is to balance theory/ideology with empirical reality of what it takes to solve problems in the present. Do not try to solve problems by being righteous/morally superior. It is far too easy to hate and be priggish; life is better lived finding common ground with your fellow man ( or woman).