I grew up mostly in a suburb of Chicago, Illinois. During high school, I competed on the fencing team and the math team, and volunteered as a math tutor. After finishing high school I attended Stanford University where I earned a B.S. in Physics. As a junior, I worked in a condensed matter physics lab on a project investigating the role of Thallium impurities in the superconducting properties of Tl-doped PbTe. We measurement the Hall coefficient of the material versus the Tl concentration and saw a change in behavior at a critical value of the doping. The same critical impurity concentration coincided with the onset of superconductivity in the material. I began working the following year on a project in experimental high-energy physics. I used machine learning algorithms to prepare several multivariate discriminators to select events for an analysis of tau lepton decays. I determined the expected performance of each multivariate method by applying them to simulated data. Boosted decision trees gave the most improved expected performance and benefited most from additional input variables. During my senior year at Stanford I also began to learn about atomic physics, and I decided to study ultracold atoms at MIT.
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