Photo of Nadia Payet

Oregon State is ideally located near the Silicon Forest — the high-tech area of Portland, Oregon and Vancouver, Washington — home to established companies that span the range of size from Apple and Intel to Qualcomm and Mentor Graphics. Portland is also known as fertile grounds for start-up companies. Additionally, many of our students find internships and careers at utility companies such as the Bonneville Power Administration or with government agencies, like the US Army Corps of Engineers.


Our students have great opportunities on internship, such as Peter Rindal who, as an intern for Microsoft Research, competed in an international competition for computer security and won. And Vendanth Narayanan who spent his summer at Tripwire, a security solutions company in Portland.

Here are some more organizations where our students were recently on internship: Amazon, Analog Devices, Apple, Nokia Bell Labs, Broadcom, CBT Nuggets, CDK Global, Foursquare Labs, Galois, Globalfoundries, Intel, Mediatek USA, Microsoft, Microsoft Research, ON Semiconductor, Peak Reliability, SRI, Texas Instruments, Veritone, Wolfram Research, and Yale University.


Our close research ties with companies, government agencies, national laboratories and other universities give our students opportunities to make connections that help them establish their careers. Visit the Graduate Research page to learn more about the collaborative research projects our graduate students are involved with. Intel and Microsoft employ a large percentage of our graduate students, but other employers span all types of companies around the world. Employers of our graduates also include the Lawrence Livermore National Lab and NASA Ames Research Center. Our graduates are faculty at universities including George Fox University; Utah State University; University of Colorado; University of Florida; Indiana University; Washington State University; University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign; and University of Houston.

Our Alumni

We are proud of our alumni who are changing the future of technology. Here are a few examples to give you an idea of where your career could go:

Electrical and Computer Engineering

Terri Fiez (Ph.D. 1990) applied the lessons in leadership she gained as a Ph.D. student at Oregon State University to her career as a professor, entrepreneur, and university academic leader. She is now the vice chancellor for research and innovation at University of Colorado Boulder

Hai Yue Han (Ph.D. 2012) was the founder of the Solar Vehicle Team at Oregon State. He now works at Tesla Motors where he is currently working on electric cars as a prototyping engineer.

Ron Khormaei (B.S. 1988, M.S. 1989, Ph.D. 1995) left Iran when he was 15 years old to seek a better future. His varied career included positions as director of engineering for HP and Logitech, CEO at Lensbaby, Circle Technologies, and his own start-up, FINEX.

Pavan Kumar Hanumolu (Ph.D. 2006) is a professor at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. His research (with OSU Prof. Tejasvi Anand) to cut microprocessor power consumption was featured in an article by TechRepublic. He received a prestigious National Science Foundation Early CAREER Award in 2010, and currently serves as an associate editor of the Journal of Solid-State Circuits.

Kate Remley (Ph.D. 1999) is an electronic engineer at the National Institute of Standards and Technology where she leads the Metrology for Wireless Systems Project. She was inducted into OSU’s College of Engineering Academy of Distinguished Engineers in 2011, and became an IEEE Fellow in 2012. (Video)

Mike Starrett (Ph.D. 2016) was the recipient of a Hydro Research Foundation award as a graduate student. He is currently an energy analyst at the Northwest Power and Conservation Council as a member of the generating resources team and is a technical lead in emerging technologies and energy storage.

Michael Thornburn (Ph.D. 1992) has worked at Rockwell International, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, The Aerospace Corporation, Santa Clara University, and Space Systems Loral. He was also the head of engineering operations for the Joint ALMA Observatory in Chile, and is currently an assistant VP at AT&T. He was elected into OSU’s College of Engineering Academy of Distinguished Engineers in 2015.

Howard Yang (Ph.D. 1990) was the first integrated-circuits (IC) designer to return to China from Silicon Valley in the early 1990s and help lead the high-tech transformation there through education and entrepreneurship. He is currently the chairman and CEO of Montage Technology. He is an IEEE Fellow, and was elected to OSU’s College of Engineering Academy of Distinguished Engineers in 2009.

Computer Science

Guoning Chen (Ph.D. 2009) is an assistant professor at University of Houston. He received a prestigious National Science Foundation Early CAREER award in 2016 for his research to create methods to visualize large-scale scientific data.

Nick Flann (Ph.D. 1992) is an associate professor at Utah State University where he serves as the associate department head. He holds seven patents and his work in applying multicellular cancer modeling for drug discovery and optimization is featured in the Nature article “Modeling: Computing Cancer.”

Patrick Niell (M.S. 2008) is a senior software engineer at NVIDIA and a member the advisory board for the School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. Niell holds three patents in the area of 3D graphics.

Nadia Payet (Ph.D. 2011) specialized in computer vision and went on to work for Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing. She is currently a senior software engineer at Google where she manages a team that works on Google maps.

Paul McKenney (M.S. 1988) is a Distinguished Engineer at IBM Linux Technology Center where he has been working for the last 16 years. His 35-year career in software development includes over 100 patents and 200 publications, including one book. He was elected to OSU’s College of Engineering Academy of Distinguished Engineers in 2015.

Dragos Margineantu (Ph.D. 2001) is a senior scientist and technical fellow at Boeing Research & Technology. His research focuses on machine learning algorithms for systems that interact with humans and other automated components, form teams with humans, and make decisions that optimize a global system function. He is the series editor of The Springer Series in Applied Machine Learning and action editor for special issues of the Machine Learning journal.