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With hands-on technical training and a deep understanding of how people think and communicate, our SymSys alumni are changing the world and reshaping our future.

Distinguished Stanford Faculty Alumns

Michael Bernstein '06

Symbolic Systems was my opportunity to connect design and computing with a deep understanding of how we, as people, think and act. When I entered graduate school, I quickly noticed that this mix led me to directions that few others were pursuing. Today, I draw on this multi-inheritance daily in my teaching and research in how we design computing systems that mediate social interactions.

Find out more about Michael

Mike Frank

Michael Frank '04

It's no exaggeration to say that Symbolic Systems has shaped my career. I read Gödel, Escher, Bach the summer before starting Stanford and immediately knew that I wanted to study this blend of formal systems and human cognition. I loved my coursework in SSP, especially the courses I took in logic and philosophy of language (both for my concentration in philosophical foundations). Now back at Stanford I direct the Language and Cognition lab where we work on just these questions, often in collaboration with SSP students. In addition, I'll be stepping into the role of Director of Symbolic Systems in Winter 2020. 

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What can you do with your B.S. or M.S. right after graduation?

Here are just a few of the diverse first career steps for some of our recent graduates:

  • Law school
  • Medical school
  • PhD in Computer Science, with a focus on machine learning
  • PhD in Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Masters in Media Study
  • Masters in Game Design
  • Masters in Education
  • Software engineer at Trulia
  • Goldman Sachs’ Investment Banking Division
  • Founding member of virtual reality startup, training professional athletes
  • Working in the film industry
  • Stock broker
  • Software engineer at Workday
  • Program Manager at Microsoft
  • Working in the real estate industry
  • Associate in Parthenon-EY, a strategy consulting firm
  • Associate Product Manager at Google
  • CEO of new healthcare startup
  • Fellowship at Berkeley Repertory Theatre
  • Product manager for educational technology firm
  • Software engineer at Amazon
  • Engineer at Anova Culinary, culinary devices
  • Innovation Division of the San Jose Mayor’s Office
  • Started a new company augmenting sales teams with natural language processing
  • Working in the biopharmaceutical industry
  • Philanthropy Fellowship
  • Associate Consultant at Bain & Company
  • Lead on initiative in India, focusing on technology in rural areas
  • Digital installation art
  • Technology focused management consultant in Amsterdam
  • Financial analyst
  • Business development analyst
  • Product Manager at Asana
  • User experience researcher at Google and LinkedIn