P.D. Soros Fellowship for New Americans


Mark Xue, 2015

CTO and Co-Founder, Germ Network

Mark Xue is an immigrant from China

Fellowship awarded to support work towards an MS in Computer Science at Stanford University

Mark Xue is the CTO and co-founder of Germ Network, a startup fostering healthy digital communications.

Mark is an immigrant from Shanghai, China. Following the Cultural Revolution, his father was among a small number of people admitted to college, and later received a graduate fellowship that allowed Mark’s parents to immigrate to the United States. For the first few years of his life, Mark was raised by his grandparents and aunts in Shanghai while his parents worked to be able to afford to raise him in America. Mark grew up in New York City, immersed in math as an undergraduate researcher and math team coach. He graduated from Columbia in 2006 with a B.A. in Mathematics. As a New Yorker still carrying memories of 9/11, he joined the Marines, where he served for eight years as a helicopter pilot.

During this time, he taught himself to build mobile applications and applied that skill to problems he faced as a pilot. Following his military service, Mark obtained an M.S. in Computer Science from Stanford with the support of the Paul and Daisy Soros Fellowship.

Mark was previously a privacy engineer at Apple, where he advocated for users in the design of products including iMessage, FaceTime, iCloud, and Safari. He is a named inventor on patents used in Group FaceTime and App Clips. 

  • MS Computer Science | Stanford University 2017
  • BA Mathematics | Columbia University 2006
Work History
  • Germ Network, CTO and Co-Founder
  • Apple, Privacy Engineer
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