Mason was originally raised on the outskirts of Houston, Texas; a situation towards which he felt ambivalent until discovering the cultural richness of the inner-city during his undergraduate studies in mathematics and physics at the University of Houston. Aside from delving into his research in theoretical quantum chemistry, Mason gravitated towards the Houston arts/music scenes and took courses on piano performance and visual art. Immersed in a world valuing aesthetics and subjective experience outside the classroom, Mason’s view of mathematics and physics, shifted toward the appreciation and identification of beauty and the individual creative effort in fields of study that most people would regard as technical and dry. It is this beauty and creativity that Mason hopes to impart to all of his students.
Throughout his studies at the University of Houston, Mason won various undergraduate research fellowships, was acknowledged as an Honorable Mention for the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship in the Spring of 2012 and won the full award the following year. He also published an article on ideas at the intersection of quantum chemistry and mathematical physics in the Journal of Physics A (a peer-reviewed journal) and a textbook chapter on supersymmetric quantum mechanics. In the Summer of 2012, Mason was sent to CERN (a.k.a the Large Hadron Collider) as a research intern to work on numerical algorithm design for medical device applications of the particle detectors that were originally developed for the collider. On July 4th of that summer, the Higgs boson was discovered at the collider, an event that left a lasting impact on Mason’s enthusiasm for fundamental physics.
Since leaving Houston, Mason has worked as a teaching assistant at the University of Colorado - Boulder and a teaching fellow at Harvard University, both in physics departments, in addition to private tutoring.
In his spare time, Mason enjoys skateboarding, learning how to DJ, and working on large-scale art installations and paintings. One of his pieces is currently on exhibit, until September, at the MIT Museum as a part of the Cosmic Bell Experiment project.