Humans of SymSys: Richard Kahn


Richard is a first year master’s student in SymSys.

Where are you from? 

I grew up in Chicago and did my undergrad at Yale in Math & Philosophy. For the five years between undergrad and Stanford, I was working at Locus Analytics, an economic think tank / hedge fund / data analytics firm. Other SymSys folks have been interns there. Ask me about it!  

What's something cool you've worked on? 

My undergrad senior thesis was an argument for the Platonic existence of numbers. Not necessarily cool, but certainly out there.

What drew you to the SymSys MS program? 

It's more or less the only program of its kind that brings together all of my interests! And I figured that giving the West Coast a try made sense.

What are some of your initial impressions of Stanford? 

Besides the obvious things, it's definitely a more professional-oriented philosophy here than Yale. Professors and students alike are focused on how to make a difference in the non-academic world, which is exciting!

What kind of research are you hoping to do here?

I'd like to dip my hands into some more linguistics than I've previously done.  

What's one piece of advice you'd like to offer to younger students?

Don't ever take a course you don't want to take. If it feels bad in the first week, trust your gut. College is too short.