Chemical engineering alumnus named to Forbes '30 Under 30' list


By Tessa M. Pick

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Penn State chemical engineering alumnus and Schreyer Scholar Paul Suhey has been named to the 2021 Forbes “30 Under 30” list for the consumer technology industry. Suhey is the co-founder and chief operating officer of Revel, an electric mobility company.

Each year Forbes chooses individuals from 20 industries — including social media, education, sports, finance, energy, enterprise technology and health care — to be named to its “30 Under 30” lists. From thousands of nominations, Forbes chooses 600 people who have made contributions to change the course of their industry. This year, the 10th annual Forbes “30 Under 30” consists of young entrepreneurs, activists, athletes, scientists and entertainers from across North America.

“It means a lot to even be nominated for this award,” Suhey said. “I am very grateful for this recognition. Looking forward, we know that the hard work is yet to come. We know we still have work to do.”

Suhey and co-founder Frank Reig started Revel in 2018. It began with 68 mopeds in New York City boroughs and has since grown to more than 6,000 electric mopeds in six major cities — New York City, Miami, San Francisco, Oakland, Berkeley and Washington D.C. In order to use this service, users located in one of the six cities use the Revel app to find and reserve a nearby moped. Users are able to pause rides anywhere or end rides in a pickup or drop off area. Revel also provides free lessons for beginners looking to use its service.

“We’ve grown into the largest shared electric vehicle operator in the United States,” Suhey said. “It’s been a few very exciting years.”

Suhey said the inspiration to start this company came from seeing other countries successfully utilizing moped transportation.

“We wanted to use this type of transit to help our riders connect,” Suhey said. “We noticed that current public transit in New York City was geared toward getting people in and out of Manhattan. We wanted to connect our riders to new neighborhoods, restaurants and job centers on just two wheels.”

In response to the ongoing global pandemic, in March 2020, Revel stared offering free rides for all health care workers and expanded its service areas in order to allow workers to have easier access to major hospitals and medical centers while abiding by social distancing recommendations.

“We were inspired to create the program after seeing health care workers naturally gravitate to our service,” Suhey said. “We expanded our service area in New York City, with city support, into Manhattan and the Bronx to cover more hospitals. Over 3,000 health care workers signed up, and we had 200,000 miles driven on the system over a 10-week period, all for free.”

Suhey graduated from Penn State in 2014 with a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering. While at Penn State, Suhey worked closely with his adviser Darrell Velegol, distinguished professor of chemical engineering, on undergraduate research related to chemical game theory — which focused on understanding decision-making through chemical engineering principles.

“I often see that people are hard pressed to find a Penn Stater who didn’t have a good experience,” Suhey said. “As a Penn State engineering student, I gained a lot of experience tackling really difficult problems. Penn State engineering gave me the mindset and mentality that helped me face challenges and break down a challenge into its component parts. Penn State gave me the real-world practice that was and will remain super helpful in my career.”


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College of Engineering Media Relations

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Paul Suhey, Penn State chemical engineering alumnus and Schreyer Scholar, was named to the 2021 Forbes 30 Under 30 list for the consumer technology industry. IMAGE: PROVIDED BY PAUL SUHEY