About Farid Ait Chaalal studied mathematics, physics and mechanics at the Ecole Polytechnique in France. He graduated with majors in fluid mechanics and Earth sciences. He then pursued a PhD in atmospheric sciences at McGill University in Canada. He was part of the stratospheric dynamics and chemistry group, where his work bridged applied mathematics, geophysical fluid dynamics and atmospheric chemistry.
For his first postdoctoral appointment, Farid Ait Chaalal held a joint position with the division of geological and planetary science at Caltech and the department of physics at Brown University (USA). He investigated novel approaches to computing climate statistics.