David Dotson


I am gay and I am a computational physicist / systems engineer.//


I grew up in the Midwestern U.S., and developed an interest in science and technology pretty early on. In undergrad I started out as an engineering major, but soon found myself drawn to fundamental questions about our reality, eventually switching to physics. From there I went on to graduate school and completed a Ph.D. in computational physics in 2016.

My sexuality played a large part in the path I took. The conservative politics and religion of my youth were challenged in my teens by feelings and thoughts I could not understand, and definitely couldn’t escape. They inspired foundational questions of my worldview, and I have never been the type to be able to ignore such things for very long.

I’m happy I didn’t ignore those feelings. They led me through my undergraduate years, through graduate school, and to the present moment. I now work as an independent consultant, specializing in computational modeling and systems engineering. Without my sexuality constantly challenging my assumptions as a young man, I’m doubtful I’d be as inquisitive, sensitive, and daring as I am today. Though many times I thought it a burden, it is now an asset that relatively few in my line of work possess.

I’m so thankful for what being gay continues to teach me.