UB Annual Symposium on Job and Career Perspectives for Students in the Computational Sciences*

In 2015, the group (led by Johannes and Atif) launched the UB Annual Symposium on Job and Career Perspectives for Students in the Computational Sciences and we have been organizing this event every spring since. Starting in 2016, the Symposium has been part of the UB CDSE Days and traditionally represents its final event. We have put an emphasis on winning a broad base of stakeholders for the symposium and it is now sponsored and supported by the

  • UB School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS),
  • Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering (CBE),
  • Department of Materials Design and Innovation (MDI),
  • Computational and Data-Enabled Science and Engineering Graduate Program (CDSE),
  • New York State Center of Excellence in Materials Informatics (CMI),
  • Center for Computational Research (CCR),
  • Center for Unified Biometrics and Sensors (CUBS),
  • Graduate Student Association (GSA), and
  • Computational Sciences Club (CSC).

The goal of our symposium is to address the questions of students who work (or plan to work) in the computational research groups at UB regarding their career prospects once they conclude their university education. Every year, we are inviting five speakers to this full-day event, and their combined experience has so far covered jobs at BASF, BigDataBio, Bloomberg, Bosch, Corning, Cryos Net Consultancy, DE Shaw Group, DE Shaw Research, Dow Chemical, DuPont, Eastman Kodak, ExxonMobil, Gradient Boosted Investments, HGST/Western Digital, IBM, Intel, Kitware, Max Planck Institute, NASA, NETL, Nexight Group, NIH, NIST, NREL, Pfizer, PNNL, Q-Chem, Samsung, Sandia National Lab, Schlumberger/OneSubsea, Shell Oil, and Wiley. Our speakers have typically conducted computational research during graduate school (including at UB) and then transitioned into employment outside the university domain. They share their experience on finding jobs coming from a computational background, their move from academia to their new environment, and their thoughts on the computational R&D landscape in the industry. They report on the job situation in their chosen profession, give insights into the nature of their work, and talk about opportunities with their specific employers (we actually encourage people to use this event to promotion their company, their work, and, if applicable, as a recruiting opportunity). Each presentation is followed by a Q&A session and we hold a joint panel discussion with all speakers at the end of the symposium. Students have the chance for personal conversations with the speakers during a light lunch.

(* The original name of the symposium used in 2015 and 2016 was UB Symposium on Computational Science: An Industrial and Career Perspective.)


Speakers 2015:

  • Opening remarks by Prof. Gary F. Dargush (Associate Dean For Research And Graduate Education),
  • Prof. Michel Dupuis (UB, previously PNNL, IBM, UB alumnus),
  • Dr. Roel Sánchez-Carrera (BASF, previously Bosch),
  • Dr. Roberto Olivares-Amaya (BigDataBio),
  • Dr. Matteo Cavalleri (Wiley),
  • Prof. Edward Furlani (UB, previously Eastman Kodak, UB alumnus).

Speakers 2016:

  • Opening remarks by Prof. Abani Patra (Director of UB CDSE),
  • Dr. Scott Wierzchowski (Shell Oil, UB alumnus) – cancelled due to weather,
  • Dr. Changwon Suh (Nexight Group, previously NREL),
  • Dr. Alexander Sodt (NIH/NICHD, previously Q-Chem),
  • Dr. Marcus Hanwell (Kitware, previously Cryos Net Consultancy),
  • Dr. Frederick Phelan, Jr. (NIST, UB alumnus).

Speakers 2017:

  • Opening remarks by Dr. Liesl Folks (Dean of UB SEAS),
  • Dr. Eric Grzelak (Schlumberger/OneSubsea, UB alumnus),
  • Dr. Timothy J. Lee (NASA),
  • Dr. Jonathan D. Moore (Dow Chemical),
  • Dr. Romelia Salomón-Ferrer (Pfizer),
  • Dr. Derek Stewart (HGST/Western Digital).

Speakers 2018:

  • Opening remarks by Prof. Krishna Rajan (Chair of UB MDI),
  • Dr. Robert Ashcraft (Samsung),
  • Dr. Jonathan J. Dorando (Gradient Boosted Investments, previously Bloomberg),
  • Mr. Laszlo R. Seress (DE Shaw Group),
  • Dr. Jarod Younker (ExxonMobil, previously DuPont),
  • Dr. Sarah Mostame (Intel, previously Max Planck Institute).

Speakers 2019:

  • Opening remarks by Prof. Abani Patra (Director of UB ICSD and CCR),
  • Dr. Scott Wierzchowski (Shell Oil, previously Schlumberger, UB alumnus),
  • Dr. Janice Steckel (NETL),
  • Dr. Mardochee Reveil (Corning, previously Intel),
  • Dr. Andrew Taube (DE Shaw Research, previously Sandia National Lab),
  • Dr. Suddha Talukdar (Intel, UB alumnus).

(Last update: 2019-04-13)