About Me

Samson Donick’s grandfather, Irvin Donick, spent his childhood hiding from the Nazis in Poland. Immigrating to the US at age 10, Irvin quickly mastered the English language, skipped grades one through eight, and graduated high school, on time, in a country that wasn’t his own. Irvin shined in school and went on to become a preeminent podiatrist. A scholarship fund at Kent State University’s College of Podiatric Medicine was established in his honor.

Irvin’s grandson, Samson Donick, similarly spent his school-age years garnering various honors as a highly regarded student-athlete, eventually securing a spot on the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Engineers basketball team. Samson Donick was known as a leader on and off the court. His Redwood High School basketball coach said, "[Samson Donick] makes people around him better.” Samson Donick has also proved highly intelligent, achieving numerous academic accolades at Town School for Boys in San Francisco, Redwood High School in Larkspur, Choate Rosemary Hall in Wallingford, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, in Cambridge. Samson Donick also spent time in Puerto Rico, volunteering as a member of the Red Cross and assisting victims of Hurricane Maria. While living in New York, New York, Donick has designed algorithms to trade volatility and capture statistical arbitrages within financial markets.

Donick was raised in the San Francisco Bay Area (Tiburon), by his mother and father, alongside his three younger siblings. A high-achieving child, he grew up loving literature, historical fiction, 49ers football, the Golden State Warriors, traveling, surfing, skiing, hiking, basketball, live music, volunteering, and spending time with his family. However, he has always focused on his academics, athletics practice, and volunteering for nonprofits like the Red Cross in Puerto Rico and currently the NYCLU.

Academic Background

Samson Donick attended primary school at the Town School for Boys in San Francisco, CA. For four years, he then attended Redwood High School in Larkspur, CA. Samson Donick graduated from Redwood High School as a National Merit Scholar, an AP Scholar with Distinction, a Presidential Scholar Nominee, and the recipient of the Math Department Award. During his Junior year at Redwood, Donick completed an internship at a real estate investment firm and volunteered with non-profit organizations in Marin and San Francisco.

After Samson Donick’s senior year at Redwood High School, he decided to enroll as a postgraduate, fifth-year student at the boarding school, Choate Rosemary Hall High School, in Wallingford, Connecticut. He was then recruited to play collegiate basketball at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Basketball Career

Samson Donick spent his summers playing AAU basketball in tournaments across the United States for the local Bay Area Warriors and Oakland Rebels AAU basketball programs. The Bay Area Warriors are a non-profit that seeks to shape and mentor student-athletes as they mature.

Donick started as a point guard on the varsity basketball team for his sophomore through senior seasons at Redwood High School. He was a star player, leading the team in points, rebounds, and steals his senior year. He was a two-time Marin County Athletic League (MCAL) All-League player and was nominated for the Cal-Hi Sports all-state team. Donick was also named to the all-tournament teams at the Rose City Classic and Russ Peterich Viking Tip-Off classic tournaments. As a senior, Donick was the Team Captain and Most Valuable Player. Samson Donick also played on the Redwood varsity lacrosse team his sophomore year in 2011.

During his post-graduate year (2013-14) at Choate Rosemary Hall, Donick helped lead the team to a Founders League Championship, a number 1 NEPSAC Class A ranking, and an 18-3 season record.

Donick started MIT in the Fall of 2014 and began his stint as Point Guard for the MIT Engineers Men’s basketball team. During the 2015-16 season, Donick was named to the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Men’s Basketball Academic All-Conference team.

Volunteer Work

While in high school, Samson Donick volunteered with the Caliber charter school in Richmond, CA, where he taught children in first through fourth grades basic reading and math schools.

While at MIT, Samson Donick was the Head of Team Community Service for the Men’s basketball team. In that role, he coordinated community service initiatives with Cradles to Crayons, a Boston organization that assists children, from birth to age 12, living in low-income and homeless situations.

In 2017, Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico and caused unprecedented damage. In the wake of the hurricane, Samson Donick moved to the island from where he worked as a principal member of the small Disaster Relief Field Services team within the Red Cross. Fluent in Spanish, Samson Donick was able to participate in, and lead missions focused on distributing solar lamps, generators, and other relief items. Donick and his team focused on reaching the elderly with urgent medical needs and those in the island's most impacted, remote parts. A Telemundo story featured Donick and a teammate as they delivered generators to residents and installed carbon monoxide detectors in homes in the middle of the island. During Donick’s time on the island, he was also able to save a young girl from drowning at Ocean Park Beach in San Juan.

Samson Donick has spent the past few years volunteering with the NYCLU, the New York branch of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). The organization dedicates itself to providing legal aid and fighting discrimination. Some of the areas the NYCLU tackles are racial justice, voting rights, due process, worker’s rights, and immigrants' rights, like Samson Donick’s grandfather Irvin Donick. Samson Donick remains actively involved with the NYCLU as a volunteer and supports their mission.

Donick has also contributed to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Light the Night fundraiser in Boston and other initiatives.


Along with his athletic accolades and his volunteerism, Donick actively participates in machine learning research and the world of academia. Samson Donick co-authored (first listed author) a paper published in Nature’s Scientific Reports journal titled Uncovering feature interdependencies in high-noise environments with stepwise lookahead decision forests. The paper presents a modification of the data science machine learning random forest algorithm architected by Samson Donick and his co-author for its applications in finance. The paper’s content is now included in machine learning curriculums at multiple universities.


Samson Donick Portfolio