Qilin was born and grew up in Zhuzhou, China. He received his B.S. Degree in material chemistry from Peking University in 2018, where he worked with Prof. Dahui Zhao on the synthesis of polycyclic hydrocarbons with multi-radical properties. He also conducted research with Prof. Swager on anion sensing in the winter of 2016, and worked with Prof. David Harris on magnetic MOFs as a summer student at Northwestern University. In Fall 2018, Qilin joined Swager group as a graduate student and will work on complex colloids.