Born in Riverside, California to Chinese immigrant parents, Wang spent his formative years on the move. He lived in Indiana, Bermuda and Tennessee. He moved to Los Angeles and attended UCLA where he majored in Asian Studies and dabbled in theater. He credits UCLA theater professor Jenny Roudtree as a key influence in his development as an actor. "Jenny was responsible for my first breakthrough," he explains. "She inspired me to go beyond the status quo."
Wang, in his first performance outside of college, garnered unprecedented critical acclaim for his portrayal of John Lee in the lead of Chay Yew's Porcelain at Burbage Theater. Despite a busy schedule, Garrett has continued to perform in various staged readings such as Model Minority for the Los Angeles Theater Center, Woman Warrior for the Mark Taper Forum and A Language of Their Own for the Intiman Theater.
Prior to joining the cast of Star Trek: Voyager, Garrett guest starred in the premiere episode of the ABC series All American Girl starring Margaret Cho. "I believe that I now have a huge responsibility in being one of a very small number of Asian Americans appearing on television regularly," Wang explains. "My goal now is to do the best job possible playing Harry Kim and to begin repaying my parents for the unaccountable financial support they have given me throughout the years." Wang recently appeared in two independent feature films Ivory Towers and Hundred Percent. In 1997, he was named one of the "50 Most Beautiful People" by People magazine. Additionally, E! Entertainment Television has selected Garrett as on of the "20 Coolest Bachelors" in the country.