Prospective Collaborations: Interested in a collaborating with me on a research project?

This is a great read for everyone: Professor Koyejo’s advise for his own prospective students.

Postdocs, Junior student, fellow Graduates students, and the rest

Shoot me an e-mail (brando9 AT stanford DOt edu) if you think our interests align and we can discuss potential collaborations.

Undergraduates and Master Students at Stanford

I’m always keen and excited to work with motivated and talented students. I always have more ideas than I can ever execute. However, research is challenging – yet rewarding – and mentoring is a time-consuming endeavor. Therefore, I’ve created this process to aid us in the matching processes. In exchange, you will get worldclass mentorship in research, (see my Bio and publications)[].

The application process to work with me is designed to ensure dedicated, independent, and focused individuals are matched mentoring opportunities. In order to be considered, please adhere to the following steps – where step 1-4 should be included in your first email to me:

  1. Submit a small paragraph detailing your motivation for engaging in research and career plans. Along stating if you can commit to a minimum of 10 hours per week. I typically recommend a 20-hour weekly commitment, as research can be challenging, and it is crucial for the time be productive for all parties involved. A commitment of at least two quarters is required, with a recommended duration of three to four quarters (~1 year ideal).
  2. Provide me a copy of your CV and all relevant academic transcripts. It is your responsibility to clarify any unfamiliar information or discrepancies that may be present in the documents. Completion of classes related to Machine Learning, such as CS 229 or Deep Learning CS 230, is a strongly suggested (or equivalent experience), as well as coding/software development experience.
  3. I would also like to learn about your proficiencies in the areas of mathematics, science, and engineering. Mention this in your e-mail please.
  4. Obtain a recommendation from a previous mentor/teacher/profess. At the very least an e-mail where someone endorses you. The best recommendation would be a strong letter of recommendation – ideally from a faculty member. While a brief letter/e-mail helps, a more comprehensive endorsement is preferred. If you’ve taken CS 197 at Stanford please mention and if you can have either the instructor of your mentor write a brief e-mail of endorsement.

After reviewing the above I will reply with the following if it seems we are a good match within a week:

  1. Take part in an 30 minutes interview; during which we will spend approximately 15 minutes discussing your contributions to a previous technical project + 7 minute discussing your background & motivations + 8 minutes discussing the potential future project.

By following these steps, you will demonstrate your initiative along with your commitment to excellence and your ability to work independently. While the standards are high, we have carefully designed the requirements to encourage candidates to apply. If you’re uncertain, especially about the fourth requirement, we still encourage you to apply If your most hesitant about requirement 4 I encourage you to request at a minimum a brief e-mail from a previous mentorm recommending your candidecy. We believe in potential and growth, and should you decide to apply, we envision this process as a shared platform for growth and advancement regadless of the outcome.

To foster a productive and professional working relationship I’d like to outline some of my expectations:

  1. Independence, Initiative and Communication: I expect you to work independently while maintaining effective communication. I’ve discovered asynchronous means is effective – with “context-shifting”/“attention residue” as a potential caveat. While in person meeting can be effective we should use be thoughtful and make sure synchronous meetings are done with intention. I do prefer in person mentorship.
  2. Recommended Reading: I encourage prospective mentees and collaborators to review the following resource, which I plan to include on my webpage: Professor Koyejo’s advise for his own prospective students.
  3. Intrinsic motivation and curiosity are essential for successful research, as they encourage critical thinking and a detective’s mindset. In addition, genuine interest serves as a driving force to persevere through challenging moments in research and cultivate enduring motivation.
  4. My Mentoring Style: tackling complex challenges necessitates empowering mentees to work independently and resourcefully. My degree of involvement will be directly proportional to your level of engagement.

By adhering to these expectations, we can establish a productive and professional mentoring relationship, marked by independence, initiative, and open communication. The pursuit of discovery and the opportunity to contribute knowledge to our field is a profoundly beautiful and rewarding experience. While professionalism is crucial, I believe it is equally important to embrace a grander vision, one that transcends our individual efforts and aspires to make a lasting impact on the world. Together, we can channel our passion and expertise to inspire meaningful change and shape the future. I believe this is one of the roles of scientific research.

If you are interested, I look forward to reviewing your application (e-mail me at brando9 aT stanford dOT edu and which project you are interested in and why) and potentially embarking on a fruitful mentoring relationship.

I do encourage you to read this: Professor Koyejo’s advise for his own prospective students.

Project Ideas

Here are some potential projects I’m interested in: project list. If you have your own or an adaptation of my that aligns with my interests, I’m happy to discuss it with you – but will expect that you have scoped it in a persuasive matter, thought about the impact, and have a clear plan for how you will execute it. Though, I don’t expect you to come with your own project.