Alum of the Month, Nov. 2022: Camilo A. Duarte-Cordon
Degree(s) from Purdue: PhD in Mechanical Engineering
Year graduated: December 2021
Current position: Postdoctoral Researcher at Columbia University
Describe what you do in this role:
My current and past research focuses on using computational modeling to study the deformation response of energetic materials under extreme loading conditions – high pressure, high temperature and intermediate to high strain rates.
What was your favorite part about being a PERC student researcher?
During my Ph.D., I participated in the Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative (MURI) project titled “Predictive Chemistry and Physics at Extreme Conditions.” My favorite part was collaborating with experimental and computational scientists on different challenges involving multiphysics phenomena in high explosives.
How do you use the skills/knowledge that you gained as a student researcher in your current position?
With this experience, I gained knowledge and skills in energetic materials, computational modeling and material science, as well as transferable skills that have helped me to become better at collaborating with people inside and outside my current institution.
Any advice for current/prospective PERC students?
Get out of the lab and try to meet people working on similar problems to yours at Purdue and other institutions. Build your community and find mentors who could guide you in research and career planning. Also, attend workshops to build transferable skills, which could help you greatly if you decide to work either in the industry or academia.