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Neal Simon Kwong, PhD

I'm a Mendenhall research fellow in the Earthquake Hazards Program at the Geologic Hazards Science Center in Golden, Colorado who is currently working on projects related to seismic risk of critical infrastructure systems in the United States.

N. Simon Kwong received his Bachelor of Engineering degree in Civil Engineering from The Cooper Union in 2009, the Master of Science degree in Structural Engineering from the University of California Berkeley in 2010, and the Doctor of Philosophy degree, also in Structural Engineering and from Berkeley, in 2015.

Prior to joining the Earthquake Hazards Program at USGS, Simon was an assistant professor in structural engineering at The Cooper Union from 2016 to 2019. During this time, he taught ten different semester-long courses on various topics in structural engineering, supervised four Master’s theses, and helped the department successfully renew its ABET accreditation.

He is passionate about problems related to probabilistic modeling of seismic hazards, selecting earthquake ground motions for nonlinear structural dynamic analyses, and assessing seismic risks of the built environment. Some of his awards include the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship, the UC Berkeley Outstanding Graduate Student Instructor Award, and the Cooper Union Full-tuition Scholarship. He also currently serves as a peer reviewer for several journals and textbooks.

As a Mendenhall at USGS, his research currently focuses on understanding, quantifying, and reducing seismic risk of critical infrastructure systems (e.g., natural gas pipelines) in the United States.

Research advisors: Dr. Kishor S. Jaiswal, Dr. Nico Luco, Dr. Kris A. Ludwig, Prof. Jack W. Baker

Student intern: Vasey J. Stephens