Join our mission
Students with a keen interest in statistical mechanics, computer simulations, machine learning, and/or applied mathematics:
If you are an undergraduate or graduate student currently enrolled in or admitted to Oregon State University, I encourage you to contact me at Cory.Simon [at] oregonstate.edu to discuss available positions and potential research projects. Please include your CV and a short statement of your interests and career goals.
If you are interested in pursuing a graduate degree at Oregon State University and joining the Simon Ensemble, please apply here and mention your interest in working with me in your application.
My Advising Style
We work together towards a common mission.
If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up the people to gather wood, divide the work, and give orders. Instead, teach them to yearn for the vast and endless sea. Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
I am invested in my students’ learning and success; my success as an assistant professor is predicated on my students’.
I hope each student works on a project that he/she finds fascinating and impactful. Motivation to work diligently on a research project should stem from curiosity and the desire to make a positive impact. Our work has the potential to improve human lives, conserve resources, and preserve the planet. In addition, research progress is incredibly rewarding.
Suddenly knowing what’s going on, with total certainty, all the way to the bottom– is a special thing, attainable in few if any other places in life. You feel you’re reached into the universe’s guts and put your hand on the wire. It’s hard to describe to people who haven’t experienced it. Jordan Ellenberg
When a student finds a research topic fascinating, he/she will maximize his/her learning and be fully engaged by and ingrained in his/her research project.
Mainly play the things on the piano which please you, even if the teacher does not assign those. That is the way to learn the most, that when you are doing something with such enjoyment that you don’t notice that the time passes. I am sometimes so wrapped up in my work that I forget about the noon meal. Albert Einstein
Though research articles in peer-reviewed, scientific journals are our primary currency, I encourage students in the group to occasionally write posts in our group blog. The content may be directly related to our research, or not. The blog is intended to help students develop good writing skills, provide an outlet to advertise our research, disseminate knowledge to the public, and arouse in others excitement about/interest in science.
I am a proponent of free and open source software, data sharing, and fully reproducible research. Students can expect to use the Linux operating system (e.g., Ubuntu) and learn free and open source programming languages Python and Julia.
Our group is at a buffet
I think you can put scientists into two buckets. One is the type who dives very deeply into one topic for their whole career and they know it better than anybody else in the world. Then there’s the other bucket, where I would put myself, where it’s like you’re at a buffet table and you see an interesting thing here and do it for a while, and that connects you to another interesting thing and you take a bit of that. That’s how I came to be working on CRISPR– it was a total side-project. Jennifer Doudna
Fortunately, our toolbox of mathematics, statistical mechanics, and machine learning enables us to approach a variety of interesting problems.
Oregon is awesome
Also see Why choose OSU?.
Oregon is perfect for the outdoors: hiking, backpacking, camping, biking, skiing/snowboarding, rafting, etc. Beyond the cover images for this website, here is a sample of the scenery you can encounter in Oregon.
Corvallis is in the heart of Willamette Valley, which is known for its Pinot Noir wine.
There are several breweries in Corvallis.
Corvallis is bike-friendly. There are many nearby biking trails.
Regarding climate, temperatures are mild year-round in Corvallis. Rain keeps the scenery green and the air clean.
Enjoy the comforts of small town living in Corvallis: relatively affordable housing, little traffic, low crime rates, etc. Live the city life on the weekends; Portland is a fantastic city and only a 1.5 hr drive from Corvallis.
Corvallis is among America’s most educated cities [source].
No sales tax in Oregon!
The group contributed four nodes, each having 20 physical CPU cores and two NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti GPUs, to the high-performance engineering cluster in the College of Engineering at Oregon State. While the Simon Ensemble has priority on the computing resources it contributed, the Simon Ensemble has access to all 1,554 processor nodes on the high-performance computing cluster. A full-time staff manages these computing resources and serves as technical support. The group plans to double its contribution to the computing cluster in the next two years. The PI and grad students each possess high-performance Linux workstations with GPU computing capabilities and two high-definition monitors to increase productivity.