Alumni Profiles

Trenton Bricken

Campus: Duke
Hometown: London, England
High School: Eton College

With a Program II major in “Biological and Artificial Intelligence” I am fascinated by intelligence in all its permutations. This interest began with education reform, transitioned into human cognitive enhancement (such as nutritional interventions), and now sits at the exciting intersection of artificial intelligence and biology research.

While AI continues to rapidly outpace our expectations with new breakthroughs almost every week (do a Google search for OpenAI’s GPT-2!), the cost of genome sequencing has fallen a million-fold and mountains of data with life-saving discoveries inside are piling up. I plan to continue developing expertise in artificial intelligence while applying what I have learnt to research in biology. I am particularly motivated to work on problems that contribute to biosecurity: trying to predict, diagnose, and rapidly respond to future pandemics.

Between my love of science fiction books and playing Dungeon and Dragons, I am a the perfect epitome of a ‘frat boy’. Some of my favourite books are The Mote in God’s Eye, The Three Body Problem, Command and Control, Gödel Escher Bach, and Superintelligence. If I wasn’t a utilitarian bought into the Effective Altruism movement, then you’d find me backpacking around the world with my Grandfather’s vintage Leica M3 film camera taking mediocre photos.

Trenton Bricken